(Photo: Harvest Ministries)
Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him.
- Job 13:15
Sometimes God will glorify Himself by the way you and I lean on Him and trust Him through our suffering and hardships. At other times, He will glorify Himself by simply removing those things.
He doesn't always say no, and He doesn't always say wait. Sometimes He steps in immediately, bringing help, wisdom, comfort, and provision. I've seen that happen many, many times in my life and ministry.
The gospel of John tells the story of Jesus and His disciples encountering a man who had been blind from birth. The disciples asked their Master, "Why was this man born blind? Was it because of his own sins or his parents' sins?" (John 9:2, NLT).
It sounds a little like a rehash of the accusations Job's counselors tossed out at him, doesn't it? Whose fault was this? Why is he sick? Who committed this sin? In fact, it may not have anything to do with personal sin. Godly people can suffer, too, and still be right in the middle of God's good plans and purposes.
Jesus had a strong answer for the disciples when they asked, "Who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?"
"'It was not because of his sins or his parents' sins,' Jesus answered. 'He was born blind so the power of God could be seen in him'" (verse 3, NLT). God wanted to display His power by healing this man - as He did when He raised Lazarus from the dead. But we must also recognize there are times when God will choose not to heal the blind, raise the dead, or do what we plead with Him to do through our anguish and tears.
And it is then that we must trust Him.
It is then that we must do what Job did when his whole world fell apart. He said, "Blessed be the name of the Lord" (Job 1:21). He didn't say, "I understand this. I understand You." He simply was saying, "Lord, I trust You."
Job lived a real life in real time, and in the midst of his suffering, he couldn't read the end of his own story to see how things turned out. Yet he said, "Blessed be the name of the Lord." And so must we.