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Wednesday, November 13, 2019
Today’s Scripture Reading | Job 19:23–27
“O that my words were written down! O that they were inscribed in a book! O that with an iron pen and with lead they were engraved on a rock forever! For I know that my Redeemer lives, and that at the last he will stand upon the earth; and after my skin has been thus destroyed, then in my flesh I shall see God, whom I shall see on my side, and my eyes shall behold, and not another. My heart faints within me!” (NRSV)
In the midst of increasing physical and emotional agony, his spirit almost broken, Job affirms his faith in God. Even when he experiences God as absent, with no answer to prayer and no justice in sight, Job proclaims, “I know that my Redeemer lives, and that at the last he will stand upon the earth; . . . then in my flesh I shall see God, whom I shall see on my side.”
The most difficult times to hang on to one’s faith are when all hell has broken loose, either in one’s personal sphere or in the world surrounding us. Death of someone dear to us, chronic health issues, the loss of meaningful work, feeling helpless in the face of social ills, self-doubt and depression, all tax our spirits. We are left questioning if there is a God, or if God can be trusted. Yet here is Job, claiming that he knows in the depths of his being that his Redeemer lives and that the day will come when he shall see God on his side.
Ironically, a “best practice” when we feel overwhelmed or traumatized is to turn to the very God from whom we may feel alienated and voice our need for God’s strength and healing. If we cannot mouth any prayer ourselves, we can be lifted up by joining other believers in worship who carry the sacred narrative of God’s steadfast love through song and prayer and holy word. Avail yourself of the richness and power of the communion of saints as they gather to praise God’s name.
“Your faithfulness, O Lord, is sure in all your words, your gracious deeds; you gently lift all burdened souls and well provide for all our needs.” Thank you. Amen.
(Prayer from the hymn “Your Faithfulness, O Lord, Is Sure”)
Reflection written by Victoria G. Curtiss, Associate Pastor for Mission
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