A Brave Face

Job 1-7

Job asks, “Don’t I have a right to complain?” (6:5)

One of my favorite movies and in my opinion one of funniest, is The Great Race starring Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon. There is a scene that cracks me up every time. Several people are stranded on an iceberg in the middle of the ocean. Curtis’ character notices the iceberg is slowly melting. Lemmon’s character sees him measuring the iceberg and asks what’s going on.

Curtis whispers to Lemmon that the iceberg is melting. “But don’t tell anyone,” he says. “We wouldn’t want to worry them.” Then Lemmon (and you have to see his delivery of this line) says, “Ok. But when the water is up to my chin, I’m going to mention it to someone!”

Sometimes we think Christians should suffer in silence. We wouldn’t want anyone to think Christians are anything less than blessed and happy all the time, would we? But is that realistic? And does our brave face give a wrong impression to people who are watching us go through hard times?

Job asks another question. “Is not all human life a struggle?” (7:1a) Of course it is. Sin in our world has caused life to be a struggle for all of humanity. So why do we pretend we don’t struggle?

It’s not wrong to cry when you receive a cancer diagnosis, or lose a loved one. It’s not unchristian to admit you are going through a hard time. I don’t believe it’s wrong according to Scripture to be angry in the difficult position we often find ourselves.

But here is what I think God would have us see in Job:

In all this Job did not sin by blaming God. (1:22)

Oh, he questioned. He complained. He expressed anger and frustration. And he admitted he was depressed and wanted to die. But he didn’t shake his fist at God and walk away from his faith.

Job continued to trust God even when he didn’t understand his circumstances.

Are you in trouble right now? Go ahead and throw something. Pound your pillow. Cry out to God. But don’t deny the fact you are facing trouble. There are people who would count it a privilege to pray with and for you.

There are some things you aren’t intended to handle alone. There are some times when admitting you CAN’T do this, is the most freeing words you can say, when you turn the situation over to God.

And God, who does all things well, is able to carry your load. He’s not fooled by your brave face.

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