But I would strengthen you with my mouth, and the moving of my lips should asswage your grief. Though I speak, my grief is not asswaged: and though I forbear, what am I eased? But now he hath made me weary: thou hast made desolate all my company.
It appears that the winner of the “But Now” award would go to Job. There is still a few more “but now’s” in his book and there is no doubt in my mind that we all feel like we’re suffering the afflictions of Job in our life occasionally. Although in reality ours are likely none to compare, but it doesn’t make it any easier to deal with. We still have issues and we still serve a God who cares as much about us as He cared about Job. Scary thought though, because look at what He allowed Job to suffer at the hands of Satan.
In these verses I can hear Job’s frustrations with everyone!
There are days when I get into a Job mode and would “like” to say, “But Now, just shut-up and go away.” I’m tired of listening to Satan, I’m tired of listening to “negative nelliies”, I’m tired of listening to myself! I think that’s where Job had gotten to at this point. His friends had all but driven him to violence and he just wished they’d go away. But even if they went away, Job would still be there in his miseries. So what’s a fella to do?
In reading chapter 16 it’s another dissertation of doom, and Job is crying with voice and tears that he’s aged far beyond his years, he’s been forsaken by all and done nothing to deserve such agony. He has friends who are arrogant idiots He feels as though he’s been trampled to death by giants and death will come as a relief, but he gives one last plea in verses 21-22, “Will somebody please pray!”
O that one might plead for a man with God, as a man pleadeth for his neighbour! When a few years are come, then I shall go the way whence I shall not return.
Today may or may not be a “Job” kind of day for you; so you are either the prayee, or the prayer. But you’re one or the other. I think we’ll be shocked when we get to Heaven and God plays the movie reel of our life where we discover what we’ve been spared, or how we’ve been encouraged because of the petitions of a friend, or the prayer of an unknown. There are prayer warriors out there who utter the prayers of saints, they know not who, but they know someone’s in need.
Prayer is a failed resource. I know it is in my life. I’m the Job, I’m the crier, o woe is me! I know prayer warriors; I’ve called on them. But even that is a rarity with me because I want everyone to think I’m fine. Besides the “Dear God, I’m stupid,” theme song, my other one is “I’m fine.” It’s what I tell everyone who asks how I am because I either don’t think they really care, or if they do really care and I don’t want them to know because I’ll then be their burden.
I may need to add a new theme song into the mix… “Are you crazy?”
Job’s friends did need to shut up and pray. It’s the one time we need to give lip service as children of God.
Listen, Intercede, Petition
Listen to what someone says.
Intercede on their behalf.
And petition God for their needs.
We’ll all need it someday, and someone will return the favor. Maybe someone you don’t even know.