01
Jun
10

A Season of Suffering

12 “When they saw him (Job) from a distance, they could hardly recognize him; they began to weep aloud, and they tore their robes and sprinkled dust on their heads. 13 Then they sat on the ground with him for seven days and seven nights. No one said a word to him, because they saw how great his suffering was.”  Job 2:12-13

Those of you ,who like me, were around when the Sunscreen song was a hit, will be familiar with this line…”don’t worry, but know that worrying is as effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubble gum.  The real troubles in your life, are apt to be things that never crossed your worried mind, the kind that blindside you on an idle tuesday at 4 a.m. in the morning.”  This hit song from the 90’s has proven to be prophetic, and in the last two weeks, a season of suffering seems to have been brought to the forefront of my life.  It also happens to coincide with my reading of the book of Job, while I trek through the Old Testament.

Broken engagements, deadly car accidents, Alzheimer’s, emergency room trips, financial defeat, brain aneurysms, betrayal by sexual unfaithfulness, cancer.  All events affecting close friends or family just within the last two weeks.  As I sit in the proverbial eye of the storm of the brokenness in the lives of those around me,  I take solace only in knowing God did not fall off his throne.  In the mean time I am seeking to be a godly comfort to those around me in pain, and not a shallow cliche, or an abdicating presence.  Job’s friends seemed to do one thing right; keep their mouths closed.  Simply walk into the pain and “sit with him for seven days because they saw how great his suffering was.”

As I attempt to offer others the ministry of simply being present for them, I ask you: what has made the most difference to those around you when they were in pain? and what meant the most to you when you yourself went through a season of suffering? Prayer, comfort, cards, conversation, calls, silence, other’s presence, gifts, . . . ?

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