August 10, 2012
Evan and I read through Job together. The poor man! All his children were killed, his livelihood destroyed and his health taken away; yet he did not sin against God in his complaining and anger. How did Job have the grace and fortitude within himself to restrain his thoughts?! I guess that was God's whole point in allowing Job's suffering. God knew that through it all his servant would not curse God or stray from the truth.
"...Therefore I will not restrain my mouth;
I will speak in the anguish of my spirit;
I will complain in the bitterness of my soul."(Job 7:11)
This tells me that I can "complain" to God and speak my thoughts to him. He can take it. But, in my complaining I must not sin.
"In all this Job did not sin or charge God with wrong." (Job 1:22)
How do I yell at God, knowing that He is the one who took Cora away, and not accuse him of wrong? "In your anger do not sin." (Eph 4:26) I've tried to be careful in my prayers. Authentic but careful.
Job did not, however, hold back from crying out to God. I identify with his sentiments....
"What is man that you make so much of him,
and that you set your heart on him,
visit him every morning and test him every moment?"
"...if I sin, what do I do to you, you watcher of mankind?
Why have you made me your mark?..."
In other words, "why me?" Why me, God? Why us? I remember distinctly feeling like God had singled us out, like we had been targeted almost. "Why have you made me your mark?" It still feels like that at times.
I was one of the masses of pregnant women. In retrospect, I was enjoying it (for once)! In pregnancy and childbirth you want to be normal! My pregnancy was uncomplicated and quite easy in comparison to many women who experience sickness or discomfort. So when I was in the hospital, the last thing I expected to hear is that I'm one woman in a thousand to whom this happens in this way.
The cord was wrapped around Cora's neck four times. It was an unusually long cord. Poor baby, she didn't know she was getting herself into a mess.
And yet, now she is richer than I'll ever be this side of Heaven. She is without sorrow or pain or grief. She is truly alive and truly who God made her to be. This was no accident....
"But ask the beasts, and they will teach you, the birds of the heavens, and they will tell you; or the bushes of the earth, and they will teach you; and the fish of the sea will declare to you. Who among these does not know that the hand of the Lord has done this? In his hand is every living thing and the breath of mankind." Job 12:7-10
It is okay to be angry and sad.