Then Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head and fell on the ground and worshiped. And he said, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.” In all this Job did not sin or charge God with wrong.
Standing by the freshly dug grave, I watched a heavyhearted couple make their way up a steep hill. The father served as the lone pallbearer. Only one was needed to carry the casket holding the body of his infant son. He placed it on the nylon straps that would lower the small casket into the grave. What do you say to a couple who has lost a child? I remember only hugs and tears as we waited for the rest of the family to gather on the windy hillside.
I said a few words that seemed so inadequate. A relative spoke as well and I was thankful for his personal and comforting remarks. Then the father spoke. His words were emotional but strong and right from Scripture. Over the sound of the wind blowing through the nearby trees, he said, “The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.”
Here in this statement, first uttered by Job in his tragic loss, are words declaring the sovereignty of God and man’s only proper response. With broken hearts, tearful eyes, and quivering lips we acknowledge that God is the giver of our first breath and the One who determines our last. And even through our pain, we declare his praise.
- Tell God that all you have comes from him.
- Thank him for his sovereign love that does all things well.
Father, thank you for the example of that young grieving father on the hillside who declared your sovereignty. O God, when we stand in brokenness and pain may we too declare your praise. For Christ’s sake. Amen.
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