Read: Job 9:32-35
Sometimes speaking to a computer is wearying, but about a week ago, it made me laugh. My sister had asked me if I knew whether or not one of her old friends was still alive. Since I was uncertain, I decided to call directory assistance and try to find out if she had a current phone number and address. Hello Computer. After the question concerning what city or state I was searching, I was asked for the name of the person whose phone number I needed. I said the name slowly. I was asked several times to repeat my request, and each time I slowly spelled the name. I also asked several times if I might speak to a person, everyone in the room chuckled. When no one is on the other end of a call, it can become quite difficult to communicate. I ended up with no additional information; however, by the time I had finished searching, everyone in the room was still snickering; so, we can chalk one good thing up for AI. Laughter is, as the scriptures say, good medicine, Proverbs 17:22.
However, I remember an evening many years ago when the frustration of talking to recorded messages made a friend cry. Our precious friend who is now with her Savior suffered with poor hearing. When she came to our door, she was shaking because she had tried unsuccessfully to complete a call where she had to navigate through an auditory menu. The problem? She couldn't hear the choices well enough to get to a person and trying to do so had wearied and frustrated her. Thankfully, my husband helped her negotiate that menu until she was able to speak with a person who could help her.
O the joy of being heard and understood. It is refreshing for any of us, and in today's scripture reading, we are reminded that Job longed for this very thing under much more serious circumstances than my friend faced, Job 9:32-35. Let's take a look at his dilemma.
Job's story began with a conversation between His God and Satan. As far as we know, Job wasn't told, at least at the time of his losses what was going on in heaven. We know the details of God's high praise of Job and Satan's hatred of God's man. God praised Job for fearing Him and turning away from evil and Satan accused Job of serving God for what he had been given by God, Job 1:8-11. The battle had begun unbeknownst to Job, but God controlled the parameters of what Satan could and could not do. As the story unfolds, we watch as Job's losses piled up. He not only lost much of his riches and almost all of his servants, his children were also killed in one day. If that weren't enough, Job next suffered with horrible boils.
His friends then came to comfort him. At first, they were of help. When they were silent, they were at their best, but sadly the quiet understanding didn't last. The chapters that follow are filled with dialogs between Job and his friends. Some of the words of Job's comforters were far from comforting. They were sometimes cutting and cruel as they tried to answer the question concerning why Job had undergone such pain. They often blamed Job and accused him of hiding secret sins.Job responded with understandable and sometimes bitter lamentations. Words of grief and sorrow poured out of him. This was a man who has suffered physically, emotionally and spiritually. How could he understand what God was doing?
That is where we meet this man in Job 9:32-35. The man whom God lauded for his righteousness. He was broken, but he longed to speak with God. If only he could! He longed for a mediator. One Who could go to God on his behalf and One Who could talk with him. One Who could understand both God and man. One Who could understand all Job could not. Where could Job ever find such a One Who could approach God and understand man? Job didn't know, but praise God. We do! Job was longing for Jesus the only Mediator between God and Man, 1 Timothy 2:5.
What precious truth we who belong to Jesus have. We know the One Who the Bible says is God and the One Who became a man and lived among us, John 1:1; John 1:14. God Himself became a man and walked among us. Jesus experienced all the struggles that we do. For Example:
When we are lonely, we know He understands because He wanted Peter, James and John close to Him in Gethsemane, Matthew 26:36-46.
When we are rejected, we know God knows how that feels, Matthew 27:1523.
When we are bone weary, we remember that Jesus fell asleep in a boat and rested at a well because He was tired, John 4:6.
When we are belittled, we know Jesus was mocked, Matthew 27:27-31.
When we are misunderstood, we know Jesus was accused of having done so in league with the devil, Luke 11:14-15. What a mediator we have Who has opened access to God's throne because He lived a life void of sin, Hebrews 4:14-16. No wonder we can run to Him for help. The One Job longed for is our ever-present help.
Many people who live around us think that God is impersonal and that He couldn't possibly understand them. What a message we have to share. We know the One Job longed for. The God/Man Whose death and resurrection opened access to the Father. Yes, like Job, there are questions we can't answer; however, we know the One Whose arms we can run into when we hurt as Job did. This is the same One Who has promised to never leave nor forsake His people. He is our Helper Who is touched by our pain, Hebrews 13:5-6.
May God give us an opportunity this week to magnify the Lord and tell someone about His love. The One they long for is Jesus.