Job 2:11-16 Encouragement in the wake of the Storm

Our passage of scripture moves into the account and visit from three of Job’s friends. In verse 12 we learn “when they raised their eyes from afar, and did not recognize him, they lifted their voices and wept and each one tore his robe and sprinkle dust on his head toward Heaven. So they sat down with him on the ground seven days and seven nights, and no one spoke a word”. This raises a question. Why do we feel inadequate when trouble arises for a friend and seem lost for words? We have all encountered circumstances where a person we care for faces trouble. Maybe a friend has lost a loved one or is going through a separation period of marriage. Circumstances like these can leave us with a feeling of inadequacy to say the right encouragement to a friend. Also, the level of our friendship often dictates whether we sense the need to reach out. We sense the fear of rejection, the fear of a severed friendship, or just the fear of being misconstrued. I believe that the Bible offers us wisdom in times of inadequacy. Listen to what the Apostle Paul shared with young Timothy. In 2 Timothy 1:7 Paul writes: “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind”. There are four statements in this verse about God. We will examine the first. God does not give us a spirit of fear. Fear is an attribute of our sin nature. Fear is not an attribute of God. Scripture records after the fall of man that Adam and Eve “heard the sound of God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and Eve hid themselves from the presence of the Lord” ” (Genesis 3:8). Here is the first account of fear in mankind. Sin and its influence will always attempt to lead us into a crossroad of doubt. The death and resurrection of our Lord has abolished fear and death for the Christian. Colossians 1:20 offers us great encouragement. “And by Him, to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth, or things in Heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross.” The Christian has great hope because of the work of Christ upon the cross. When encountered with the element of fear, turn towards your greatest strength. That strength is found in the person of our Lord Jesus Christ. Pray unto God for the wisdom to share an encouragement to the one that you love or care about. It may require you to step beyond a comfort zone, but remember that “Who is he who condemns? It is Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us” (Romans 8:34). I encourage you to jot down some of God’s promises and carry them with you as you walk by faith. I invite any further discussion.