So these three men ceased to answer Job, because he was righteous in his own eyes. Then Elihu the son of Barachel the Buzite, of the family of Ram, burned with anger. He burned with anger at Job because he justified himself rather than God. He burned with anger also at Job’s three friends because they had found no answer, although they had declared Job to be in the wrong. Now Elihu had waited to speak to Job because they were older than he. And when Elihu saw that there was no answer in the mouth of these three men, he burned with anger. —Job 32:1-5

Then they sat on the ground with him for seven days and seven nights. No one said a word to him, because they saw how great his suffering was. —Job 2:13

The best part of this counseling session from Job’s friends was when they first arrived and said nothing for seven days. His friends saw Job was suffering greatly and just sat with him. They were just with him. This is what people need that are going through great suffering. They just need somebody to be with. They just need somebody to sit with them. They just need not to be alone. There just need to be silence.

But then Job’s friends started talking and what they had to say is summed up with that these friends “had found no answer, although they had declared Job to be in the wrong.” So these three friends counseling Job had already assumed that Job was in the wrong and yet they did not have an answer for Job. They should have remained silent! How sad to say someone is in the wrong without having the explanation as to why they are in the wrong. Job had told them “I have heard many things like these; you are miserable comforters, all of you!” With all of Job’s sufferings he did not need “miserable comforters!” Oh, that you and I would not be “miserable comforters!” May we godly comforters, comforting with the comfort that God has comforted us with (II Corinthians 1:3-4).

Suffering will probably always bring the “why?” question. We want to know why we are suffering and yet some things the Lord has chosen not to reveal to us (Deuteronomy 29:29). Job was suffering not because he had done anything wrong (although he was not a sinless man), but because “the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil” (Job 1:8) and to prove the point to Satan, and to us, the Lord allowed Satan to bring Job though trials.

How many times have we or those around us gone through suffering, not because we have done anything wrong, but because of doing right? We are in spiritual warfare and Satan does not want us to do right. Do not be surprised when attacks come as we are seeking to live right before God! But also remember that the Lord said, “surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:20) and that “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” So we say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?” (Hebrews 13:5-6).

Thank You Father that whatever I go through You are always with me. May I encourage Your children with this truth as well. May it be so in the power of Your Holy Spirit and in the authority of Your Son.

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