“Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him…” Job 13:15 (NIV)
Hurricane Sandy hit the East Coast in 2012 and my little area of the world was turned upside down. The town bordering mine, where many of my friends and family call home, looked like someone had taken the majority of it, thrown it in a blender, added lots of sand and water, ran it on high, then dumped it back out.
It was utter and complete devastation!
Afterwards, the world seemed to descend on us with help, as we rallied around each other, and slowly the needs of those affected were met. Everyone banded together and it was an amazing blessing to witness. Yet, almost two years later some are still trying to recover in one way or another.
Throughout, I’ve felt a strange but strong connection to it all, I guess because I could relate to being a superstorm survivor. After all, I had suffered through and survived my own a few years earlier. When my husband died so suddenly, I was in a superstorm, where my life had been thrown into a blender and then dumped back out. I felt the utter devastation and had to endure the, what seemed like, unending mess.
I was blessed to have a disaster relief team too, composed of an amazing inner circle of family and friends that came in and met all our earthly needs. The kids and I felt lost, sad, and hopeless at times, we became frustrated and angry too, just like the Sandy victims. Our recovery process was slow and often took unexpected turns as well.
At the time Sandy had hit, God prompted me to study the book of Job, a portrayal of how God allows a good man to suffer. Job was a materially and spiritually blessed man of God, who stood out (Job 1:1). Even God himself is well pleased with this man (Job 1:8). But, God allows satan to strip Job of everything; his family, his possessions, his land, and his health. Job is stricken with intense grief over the multitude of losses. He winds up asking the question we all have, “Why me?” That’s when God proves his power and sovereignty by appearing to Job in a storm, of all things.
What presses on me about this story is that everyone around him wanted him to blame God and turn from him, even his wife. Job has no “disaster relief team” to help during this superstorm. He is in it all alone, and those around are trying hard to pull him down. Yet, Job knows that his God, his only “disaster relief” team, is all he needs.
But, Job grieves, he laments, he cries out, he pleads, and he even wrestles with and questions God. In the end, God sends a clear message that He IS in control and Job yields to his power and authority. Even when he is greatly tempted to blame God and turn from him, his faith remains and he proclaims “I know that you can do all things; no plan of yours can be thwarted” Job 42:2.
Then, Job is rewarded with even greater blessings than he had before.
Friends, losing your husband can put you in a superstorm, and the devastation and aftermath is forever imprinted on your lives. Like Job, you might feel all alone in this journey, or like me you might be blessed to have a “disaster relief team” of friends and family to come around you.
Either way, I encourage you to remember that we do have a supernatural team that is here for us; Our God, Our Jesus, and the Holy Spirit dwelling within us. And we can look to this team to minister to us and to alone see us through.
Heavenly Father, help us look to You in the midst of this storm. Help us to trust You and to seek You. Be there to guide us and to strengthen us in each and every moment. In Your Matchless Name, Amen.