Where Do We Find Comfort?

Where Do We Find Comfort?

Written by Becca Harris

I was talking with a friend recently about watching someone you care about walk through something unimaginable. I was lamenting that my thoughts are often, “I don’t know how they do it. How do they keep going? I honestly don’t think I could!” In her wisdom, she shared that God’s grace wasn’t over the friend trying to imagine going through that trial, it was covering the friend walking through that trial. 

A good chunk of the book of Job is dedicated to conversations between him and his friends. One reason for this is to see Job’s character and faith in God on display in the worst of circumstances. But I think there is much we can glean from his friends, and how they responded to Job’s hardships.

Initially it might seem like Job just has not-great friends. But as we study further, I think they just don’t know how to be comforting friends. Job himself says in chapter 16:2 “miserable comforters are ye all.” We know that they have a close relationship, and they clearly care for him, because at the end of chapter 2 after everything had taken place, it says, “So they sat down with him upon the ground seven days and seven nights, and none spake a word unto him: for they saw that his grief was very great.”

I wonder what sitting in silence for seven days with someone who has just gone through such great tribulation feels like. It’s difficult for most of us to sit in silence for 7 minutes! I imagine they were wracking their brains for how to respond. What do you say to someone in this situation? I also imagine these three men were thinking, “How can we “fix” this for our friend?”

Then I wonder what Job was thinking in those seven days of silence. Mulling over the same traumatic events, but having been the one to go through them. When he finally breaks the silence, scripture says, “After this opened Job his mouth, and cursed his day.” (Job 3:1) Like many of us, he groans about how awful his life is. He cursed his day. He did not curse his God.

For the next several chapters we see his friends start trying to make sense of it all. What did Job do to deserve this? Has he sinned and not repented? They’re looking for earthly answers like many of us probably would. But they’re not looking to God.

Job is covered by the grace of God for the trial he is walking through. Enough grace that he can say, “Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him.” His friends sought comfort by seeking answers. Job sought comfort by seeking God. 

Job sought comfort by seeking God.

In a day when seeking answers comes too easily (thanks, Google!), may we remember to first seek our God. He will cover us with His grace to walk through what He himself has prepared for us.

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