daily devotional

Necessary Consequences

Read Job 1:13-22

While he was still speaking, another messenger arrived with this news: “Your sons and daughters were feasting in their oldest brother’s home. Suddenly, a powerful wind swept in from the wilderness and hit the house on all sides. The house collapsed, and all your children are dead. I am the only one who escaped to tell you.” Job stood up and tore his robe in grief. Then he shaved his head and fell to the ground to worship. (Job 1:18–20)

There is a plan that we explore which we will not understand, but it is best. Though each segment of it may not seem fair or pleasant, it works together for good. The disease Job endured wasn’t good in and of itself. Hardly! But it worked together for good. Our perspective is dreadfully limited. We see only a pinpoint of time, but God’s view is panoramic. God’s big-picture, cosmic plan is at work now, and He doesn’t feel the need (nor is He obligated) to explain it to us. If He tried, our answer would be like the confused teenager listening to his calculus teacher, “What?” You wouldn’t get it, nor would I. Just remember, the Father knows what is best for His children. Rest in that realization.

There are consequences we experience that we could not anticipate, but they are necessary. I don’t know where you find yourself today, but I would be willing to wager that most of you reading this book are going through something that is unfair. Chances are good that you simply don’t deserve what’s happening. The consequences may have started to get to you. You didn’t anticipate any of this. You didn’t think it would come to this, but it has. Trust me here. What has happened is a necessary part of your spiritual growth. Yes, necessary. I’ve finally begun to accept that reality after all these years of my life.

I want to address you who have moved onto Job’s turf. If nothing else, it has prepared you to pay closer attention to the message of Job. You’ve seen only a glimpse of how things started. The story doesn’t end with Satan’s departing from the presence of the Lord. There’s a whole lot more to Job’s story. And the more it unfolds, the more you will realize that life is not only difficult, it’s unfair.

The silence of God’s voice will make you wonder if He is even there. And the absence of God’s presence will make you wonder if He even cares. He is there. And He does care.

Taken from Great Days with the Great Lives by Charles R. Swindoll. Copyright © 2005 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. Used by permission of HarperCollins Christian Publishing.