The worst of my fears has come true, what I've dreaded most has happened. My repose is shattered, my peace destroyed. No rest for me, ever--death has invaded life. (Job 3:25-26)
This is another tough one, about the fact that believers may When I read Job's complaint in chapter 3, I recognized the depths of his despair. They echoed what I experienced after my daughter's suicide. He had lost all ten of his children, at once, in a vicious attack--one that God had permitted, although Job didn't know of the conversation between God and Satan.
(Hmm, that brings up a question: How did the writer of Job know the story? Interesting question, but I'm not going to address it here.)
As they say about paranoia--sometimes the things they fear actually do happen. For those of us with children blessed with
good health, the death of our children remains an intangible, unreasonable fear. For those children who have deathly illnesses, for those children with severe mental illness, like my Jolene, death is a very real fear. My very worst fear, as Job expressed it.
I talked with a mother just today, who said her 21-year-old daughter is a schizophrenic who refuses to get help. Her fear that she might someday get a phone call like the one I received over five years ago was palpable.
You may have a different worst fear. But if it has ever happened to you, you know how Job was feeling.
His peace was destroyed. No rest. In many ways I have healed from Jolene's death, perhaps in most ways. But I can also trace a line of physical weakness beginning with that event. One symptom is difficulty sleeping on many nights.
Job wished he had never been born. I know that feeling.
This journey through Job will not be so much about finding an answer to the question, why does a good God allow evil? but an exploration of how to survive. The things that well-meaning friends will say. A few amazing statements of Job's faith. God's answer when it at last comes.
It won't be easy.
But it is part of God's word. Not only that, it's part of our lives, at least for many of us.
I'm looking forward to new insights into surviving our worst fears.Perhaps for me, it will bring a deeper level of healing. I pray it is so for others of us who have been there, or who are ministering to those in the depths.