Thursday, April 26, 2018
“When Job’s…friends…heard about all the troubles that had come upon him, they set out…to go and sympathize with him and comfort him. When they saw him from a distance…they began to weep aloud…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 2:11-13
The number seven is one of the most significant numbers of the Bible because it is the number of spiritual perfection. It is the number which is stamped on every work of God. It is no surprise that this passage includes that number. Job’s friends, while they were not perfect, sat with him in the greatest despair of his life. They didn’t shy away from his tears…from his pain…from his despair. They joined him in his suffering and remained with him in spirit until its completion… the moment God restored everything in spiritual perfection.
A while back I experienced one of the most gut wrenching and painful seasons of my life. I just thought I knew pain up until that point and had never felt the level of loneliness until that time. There was a handful of people who continuously made time to check on me…comfort and encourage me. Many times, it was through a text and the only sound was the notification chime, but the words spoke life. Other times I would hear their voice on the other end of my phone, giving expression to my pain. Sometimes, we would be together and would simply sit in silence. I knew they were praying for my sorrow and were willing to sit with me in that awkward and uncomfortable season. I know that God hand chose this little team of people to take my hand and walk with me until it’s spiritual completion… ‘to sit with me on the ground for 7 days and 7 nights.’
We all have times where all the wheels fall off the wagon, and we feel stranded in our circumstances. It is a time when God sends those saints to minister to us and help carry us through those situations. It is so tempting to isolate…insulate…medicate but those aren’t the sustaining mercies of the Lord. King Solomon once wrote ‘Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their efforts: For if either falls his companion can lift him up…And if someone overpowers one person, two can resist him. A cord of three strands is not easily broken.’ Ecclesiastes 4:9-12
I pray that each of us thank God for our strand, those beautiful people who walk beside us through difficult times and love us right up until the season changes from winter to spring. Whether we are the strand, or the stranded God stamps on our hearts the hope to give or the hope to receive. Trust in God and trust in the road He has laid before you. Your #7 is up ahead.
"...and give relief to you who are troubled, and to us as well. This will happen when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven in blazing fire with his powerful angels." 2 Thessalonians 1:7