So Satan left the Lord’s presence, and he struck Job with terrible boils from head to foot. Job scraped his skin with a piece of broken pottery as he sat among the ashes. His wife said to him, “Are you still trying to maintain your integrity? Curse God and die.” But Job replied, “You talk like a foolish woman. Should we accept only good things from the hand of God and never anything bad?” So in all this, Job said nothing wrong. Job 2:7-10 (NLT)
Mrs. Job had decided that God had forgotten the Job's address. Her husband had messed-up somewhere, and it was so bad nothing could ever fix it! The only choice left was suicide.
Human beings seldom know God's reasoning for why things happen. (At least He never asks me before He does stuff!) We run afoul of common sense when we attempt to interpret for others what God intends; He is God, and able to speak for Himself. Eventually, Job did complain about God's program, and demanded an answer. At the end of the story Job is humbled by God's answers.
It is wrong to ALWAYS judge tragedy, sickness, and loss as a mark of God's disapproval; God's ways are indeed higher than ours.
Job's friends thought they had it all figured out. They did a friendly thing in coming to sit with Job for three days. But when they started opening their mouths, trying to speak for God, they stuck their collective feet in them. With their judgments on what was wrong in Job's life they offered their own version of Mrs. Job's "curse God and die."
Be careful not to speak for God...you don't have the credentials. God may be using tragedy in your life, or the life of someone you know to bring about some very holy things. Remember the prodigal son? He was a lot closer to success when he was learning in the pigpen, than when he'd first arrived as a rich kid, with all the trimmings.
Despite the wrong-headed thinking (and speaking) of Job’s band of friends and Job’s wife, Job needed them all. Somehow their foolishness helped frame God’s real answer to Job in a way that eventually turned on the light bulb of reason.
For You, Today…
When you’re up against it, don’t despise the community around you, even when they suggest goofy solutions, or make really exasperating statements about why you’re on God’s hit list. (Remember, you’re part of that community and have probably been on the other side of somebody’s pain).
Sit in the ashes when life makes no sense, and the walls have caved-in; loss like that calls for grieving!
But don’t speak for God, and don’t leave God or your community as a knee-jerk reaction to the unfairness of it all. Or for a bit of band aide relief, like drugs or alcohol. The last thing you need for real problems is temporary solutions that create more problems.
Sit still and wait for God to speak.