Gleanings – All Alone with Nowhere to Turn Except . . .

Job 19:1-7, 14-27

“For I know that my Redeemer lives, and at the last he will stand upon the earth and after my skin has been thus destroyed, then from my flesh I shall see God, whom I shall see on my side, and my eyes shall behold, and not another. “

So begins the burial office in the Anglican world. These words are proclaimed by the priest as the casket is processed to the front of the church. How appropriate! For Job has concluded his life is over. He has been abandoned by associates. Worse, friends and family have thrown him under the bus. “All my intimate friends abhor me, and those whom I loved have turned against me.” He finds himself utterly alone.

While I have never suffered what Job has suffered, bits and pieces of his torment at most, I have felt what Job feels for a few seasons of my life. I know what it means to be alone. I know what it means to feel abandoned. I know what it feels like to see the fruits of my labor left in ruin. I know what it is like to have nothing left to say other than “I know my Redeemer lives.”

That I have not suffered the actual calamities overwhelming Job does not mean I cannot relate. There is a threshold. After that everything else is piling on. Whether real or imagined, the threshold is when you sense no other, not one, will come to your defense. You may be loved by someone but if they will not come to your defense, the love is empty from where you stand. The beloved person might as well be an enemy. Once you cross that threshold, the presence of one more enemy and the loss of one more friend changes nothing. You have no more hope to lose. All hope for this world is gone.

What remains? Simply put, what God as sown in me. Something that man cannot destroy. There is this deep conviction that there is one on my side. And there comes a day when it becomes apparent to everyone that my advocate rules victorious. In other words, “I know my Redeemer lives”!




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