“We’re all adrift in the same boat: too few days, too many troubles.”
Suffering can force a person to come face-to-face with reality. Simple platitudes become offensive. The only honest thing is to stare down at the reality that stares back at us. It is at this point in suffering that a profound encounter with God can occur. Here, Job living without any knowledge of the peace and restoration that Jesus Christ would bring, glimpses only life’s darkest possibility.
In all of Job’s suffering, he still continues to cry out to God. The full fourteenth chapter of Job moves from hopelessness (vs. 1-12), to a cry of faith (vs. 13-17), and then back into hopelessness. In Job’s darkest hour, he foresees a glimpse of the Gospel: the hope of looking forward to the new heaven and the new earth, and the time when God will wipe every tear from our eyes (Rev. 21:1,4)
Suffering colors every part of our lives. And as Job states, “We’re all adrift in the same boat,” so “cry out in faith for all those you know who suffer, knowing that in all things God is at work for our good” (Romans 8:28).
– Benjamin Bradley