Nugget – The Process

Posted on: March 14, 2014, by :

“The Process”

While going through an illness recently, I did the usual Christian (and human) response, namely: pray for healing; seek medical attention; take medication; pray some more; get frustrated; argue with God; etc. This time though, I was confronted with the question (and the need to write it for here):
What was God doing to Job? Surely it wasn’t just to determine if Job feared him? I mean, God already knew that – He stated it to Satan before the whole episode. If that was all, why was the cost so high?
In the process, he lost his children (which Godly parent takes the lost of a child lightly, let alone all of them at once?); he lost his wealth – no, all his material possessions (sigh); then he lost his health! (groan).
And all this happened while he was ‘serving God’. I really should be describing this as ‘God took these things from Job – via Satan’. God was in charge of the whole process. We know this because (a) God is ‘sovereignly’ in control of all of His creation; (b) we are viewing this from hind-sight, and the Scripture gives us the dialogue between Satan and the Lord (Job 1, esp v 8-9)*1.
But, why would God do this? Why allow (or even provoke) suffering to come to His loved ones; “The problem of pain”*2 as CS Lewis writes in his book of said title.

When we face our own brushes or baptisms of suffering, we usually respond not only with grief but the haunting thought of betrayal by God, among other things. But even though we may think His ways unsearchable, (Job 11:7*3) we can always trust His heart (Rom 8:28)*4 and His goals. I want to highlight one of the main goals – preparing us as a habitation for Himself – (Ex 15:2*5 ; 2 Cor 5:17-19 and esp Eph 2:21*7).
We have no idea what kind of preparation this ‘building material’ has to go through but He does and so we have to trust Him. Obviously, suffering is part of the process. May you find His strength to endure the cost of your ‘alabaster box’.


*1 – Job 1:8-9 [8] The LORD said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man who fears God and turns away from evil.” [9] Then Satan answered the LORD, “Does Job fear God for nothing? (NRSV)

*2 – CS Lewis: The Problem of Pain – on Amazon here … .

*3 – Job 11:7 “Can you penetrate God’s depths? Can you find out Shaddai’s limits? (CJB)

*4 – Rom 8:28 and 32 – [28] Furthermore, we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called in accordance with his purpose;
[32] He who did not spare even his own Son, but gave him up on behalf of us all—is it possible that, having given us his Son, he would not give us everything else too? (CJB)

*5 – Ex:15:2 [2] The LORD is my strength and song, and he is become my salvation: he is my God, and I will prepare him an habitation; my father’s God, and I will exalt him. (KJV)
(- remember the song?)

*6 – 2 Cor 5: 17-19 way. [17] So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new! [18] All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation; [19] that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting the message of reconciliation to us.

*7 – Ephesians 2:22 [22] Yes, in union with him, you yourselves are being built together into a spiritual dwelling-place for God! (CJB)