For the Rag Bag

“Whatever happens, I will be found guilty. So what’s the use of trying? Even if I were to wash myself with soap and clean my hands with lye, you would plunge me into a muddy ditch, and my own filthy clothing would hate me.”  Job 9:29-31

Have you ever felt like that? Have you ever felt so hated and despised that you wanted to give up on life itself and quit trying altogether?

No doubt that’s where we find Job in this passage of Scripture—feeling like he’s ready for the rag bag. He is in a pitiful state. Job has lost his children, his business, his health, his wealth and he feels completely and utterly hated by the world.

You can imagine the scene today. All of Job’s good Christian friends sitting in judgment of him, wondering what he really did wrong. The pews probably parted when he came to take his seat in the church. Why, Job’s own wife told him to “curse God and die.”  

Ouch!

Job feels as though even God, Himself, has turned aside and hates him. Do you ever feel that way?

We don’t always know or understand why we are presented with difficult situations in life. Sometimes we bring them upon ourselves, and other times we do not.

Yet we know that honoring and obeying God despite difficult circumstances brings an eternal reward. It also produces the fruit of the Holy Spirit in our life: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

The rest of Job’s story provides hope for us. It reminds us that God is mindful of our earthly plight. He cares about every little detail of our lives.

Job 42:12 says, “So the Lord blessed Job in the second half of his life even more than in the beginning.”

Whether the remainder of our earthly life is doubly blessed as Job’s or not, God’s Word reminds us there is an eternal reward for continuing in faithfulness and obedience.

2 Chronicles 15:7 tells us, “But as for you, be strong and courageous, for your work will be rewarded.”

May you continue in obedience to Him, remembering that He still has a powerful purpose for your life.

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