The Loss of God

Why do the wicked live on, growing old and increasing in power? They see their children established around them, their offspring before their eyes. Their homes are safe and free from fear; the rod of God is not upon them.  They send forth their children as a flock; their little ones dance about. They sing to the music of tambourine and harp; they make merry to the sound of the flute. They spend their years in prosperity and go down to the grave in peace. Yet they say to God, ‘Leave us alone! We have no desire to know your ways. Job 21

Job is not the only one who asks this question. David did (Psalm 73), Jeremiah did (Jeremiah 12), and so did Malachi (Malachi 3).

So, I suppose I’m in good company when I wonder where God is sometimes. Have you ever been in the assembly singing The Lord Has Been Mindful of You, He Blesses and Blesses Again? Have you ever thought, “Yes, except when I needed Him more than ever.” Have you ever had a time in your life when you would like to ask him about that?

If only I knew where to find him; if only I could go to his dwelling! I would state my case before him … But if I go to the east, he is not there; if I go to the west, I do not find him. When he is at work in the north, I do not see him; when he turns to the south, I catch no glimpse of him. Job 23

As Job mourns the loss of his health, the loss of his children, the loss of his wealth, the loss of support of his wife, it appears he also mourns the loss of God. The wicked have plenty of God’s blessings, but this righteous man is suffering.

No, Job hasn’t lost his faith. He feels like his faith has lost him. When he feels he has covered every angle, Then the LORD answered Job out of the storm. Job 38.

You can read that on your own, but ultimately God asks us to believe in Him because of who He is, and not because of the events of our lives. When we think we could have arranged things differently, done things better, attended His duties better than He did, we are mistaken. We will confess along with Job, “Surely I spoke of things I did not understand, things too wonderful for me to know.” Job 42.

My hurting friend, no matter what has happened to you, you have not lost God. In spite of the pain and deep hurt, He is near. In all of your attempts to love Him and be faithful to Him, you are under His watchful care. If I dared to advise Him, I would have asked for something different. True. But ultimately I need to believe in someone who doesn’t need my advice, who sees beyond my perspective.

Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised. Job 1

Thanks for reading,

john

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