Painful Days

Now there was a day . . . ”—Job 1:13( NKJV)

We now come to “a day” in Job’s story. It might be more appropriate to call it “The Day,” because this day would prove to be unprecedented in the amount of loss that it brought, not just in Job’s life, but in all of history. 

Before delving into this day, a word of warning: Don’t allow your familiarity with the story to numb you to the shattering impact that this had on Job. Ask God to tune your imagination to an empathic frequency before reading any further: “A messenger came to Job and said, ‘The oxen were plowing and the donkeys feeding beside them, when the Sabeans raided them and took them away—indeed they have killed the servants . . . .’ while he was still speaking, another also came and said, ‘The fire of God fell from heaven and burned up the sheep and the servants, and consumed them . . .’ while he was still speaking, another also came and said, ‘The Chaldeans formed three bands, raided the camels and took them away, yes, and killed the servants . . .’ while he was still speaking, another also came and said, ‘Your sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother’s house, and suddenly a great wind came from across the wilderness and struck the four corners of the house, and it fell on the young people, and they are dead’” (Job 1:14-19 NKJV)!

It’s safe to say that nobody has ever had so much ripped away from them in so short a time. Like concussive waves mercilessly pounding a wrecked ship, the reports come one after the other—theft, loss, and death—ending with the most painful of crescendos: all ten of his children, gone.

As much as we may ask God’s help to imagine such a thing, it’s hard to fully relate to the magnitude of this tragedy. But it’s not hard to imagine our own suffering, because we all suffer to some degree. However, Job’s account is not meant to minimize our own suffering but to guide us through it, because what Job does next is what we must also do: “Job . . . fell to the ground and worshiped” (Job 1:20 NKJV).

Take note: Amidst the sea of suffering, Job does not focus on the “why” but instead on the “who” . . . who God is, and it is enough to fill a broken and empty heart. May we do the same when “The Day” comes our way. May we find ourselves bowed before the Lord in worship, not preoccupied with why we’re suffering, but with who God is.

DIG: Though different, how is Job’s experience also similar to ours? 

DISCOVER: What has been “The Day” for you?

DO: Consider what the biblical best course of action is for you when you enter into a season of suffering.

About the Author

Pastor Dan Hickling

Pastor Dan Hickling serves our online community, also known as the Calvary Chapel Online Campus. He and his wife Becky have been married for 22 years and have two children, Lauren and Danny. Both Dan and Becky have been part of the CCFL church family for 22 years and have served in full time ministry for 20 of those years.