Where Is God? Is He Listening?
If you have your Bible handy, read Job Chapter 38, or 38 through 42 if you have the time. God did answer Job’s prayers. In a voice speaking out of a storm, God showed Job and his three friends through the questions He now asked them that He had indeed been listening to all four of them.
And even though you cannot see, hear or feel Him near you in the dark hours that seem to overwhelm you, He is with you, seeing you, hearing you, near to you. God spoke out of the whirlwind, not offering answers to Job about the cause of his suffering. God did something better — He gave Job His presence.
James 5:10-11 strengthens our understanding of Job’s story. James reasons that God is full of mercy and compassion because of the way Job’s story ended — with Job saying, ‘My ears had heard of You but now my eyes have seen You, Therefore I despise myself and repent in ashes and dust. (Job 42:5-6). James chose to focus on the blessings that come from suffering. We can as well —reading Scripture and praying wholeheartedly for the presence of God Himself.
Job never found out why God had allowed him to suffer so deeply. We may not either. Our fortunes may not be restored the way Job’s were. But as Christians, we know that Jesus Christ suffered. Read Isaiah 53. God our Abba/Father watched His own Son die in torment. Jesus was betrayed by a friend, abandoned by other friends, abandoned by His community and His heavenly father and died! Our God knows suffering and He draws near to us in our pain. Look for Him and you will find Him for He is merciful and faithful. (Deuteronomy 4:29, 31).