God is involved in the bitter reality of life. We learn much from Job on how to respond to great personal or family loss such as death, divorce, sickness, rebellion, unemployment, etc.
Job was blameless, feared God and turned away from evil in the land of Uz. As the greatest man of the east, he had seven sons, three daughters, many animals and servants. His sons held a feast regularly in each of their houses where they invited their sisters. After each feast, Job rose up early to offer burnt offering to purify them in case his sons sinned and cursed God in their hearts. One day Satan came with the angels to present themselves before God. Satan told God he was roaming through the earth going back and forth. God boasted about Job's righteousness and Satan replied that God put a hedge around his household and possessions while blessing the work of his hands. Job would curse God if He struck all that he had. God said everything Job had was in Satan's power but could not put forth his hand upon him (Job 1:1-12). Pray for purity in your children's lives while recognizing God's sovereignty over Satan's activities.
On the day when his children were feasting in their oldest brother's house, Job learned in succession that his servants were killed by the Sabeans, fire from heaven burned up the sheep and consumed his servants, Chaldeans carried off the camels, and great wind struck the house and killed all his children. Job arose, fell to the ground and worshiped saying, "Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked I shall return there. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord." Job did not sin or blame God (Job 1:13-22). Accept prosperity and adversity from God without blaming Him.
On another day the angels came with Satan to present themselves before the Lord. The Lord said his servant Job was a blameless man who feared God and maintained his integrity even though Satan tried to ruin him without cause. Satan said Job would curse God if He touched his bone and flesh. The Lord said Satan could do anything except kill Job (Job 2:1-6). Maintain integrity in every circumstance even when it makes no sense.
Satan afflicted Job with painful sores over his whole body. His wife said that God should curse God and die instead of holding fast to his integrity. Job told his "foolish" wife, "Shall we indeed accept good from God and not accept adversity?" Job did not sin with his lips (Job 2:7-10). Do not blame God during great trials.
When Job's three friends, Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite heard about Job's troubles, they agreed to come and comfort him. They wept when they saw Job from a distance. They sat down on the ground and mourned with Job for seven days with no one speaking after seeing his great pain (Job 2:11-13). Accept comfort from others if they mourn without speaking.
Afterward Job cursed the day of his birth wishing he had not been born. He wished that day had turned to darkness with blackness overwhelming its light. Job would be hidden from trouble if God shut his mother's womb. He considered that dying at birth would bring peace and rest. Captives who died were at ease and free from hearing the slave driver's shout (Job 3:1-19). Express transparently your feelings and thoughts of what it would be like if you had not been born.
Job asked why light was given to those in misery who longed for death. Why was life given to the bitter of soul who rejoiced when they died or those God hedged in without revealing His purpose. Job's groans poured out like water. What he feared and dreaded came upon him. He had no peace, quietness or rest but only turmoil (Job 3:20-26). Groan freely about your bitter feelings and turmoil.
Consider the following actions when you experience great personal and family loss in your life:
1. Pray for purity in your children's lives while recognizing God's sovereignty over Satan's activities
2. Accept prosperity and adversity from God without blaming Him
3. Maintain integrity in every circumstance even when it makes no sense
4. Do not blame God during great trials
5. Accept comfort from others if they mourn without speaking
6. Express transparently your feelings and thoughts of what it would be like if you had not been born
7. Groan freely about your bitter feelings and turmoil