Dialogue at a Funeral
Imagine a funeral where there’s only one family member grieving because the funeral is for his entire family – a catastrophic event destroyed the family and left only one survivor. Unfortunately, there are all too many stories in the news these days that could create this horrible situation.
The survivor’s friends have flown into town to be with him in his time of need.
But it’s uncomfortable in the funeral home, because this survivor has issues to deal with and he’s understandably very angry at God, the universe, and everything. So he sits at the funeral home surrounded by his friends while he weeps, and then he looks at them and says he wishes he had never been born and that it would be better to be dead then to still be alive.
And his friend says, “Blessed is the one whom God corrects; so do not despise the discipline of the Almighty”
I think maybe that friend would be tossed out of the funeral home on his ear. Would anybody really say this to a friend who had just lost everything he ever loved?
In the book of Job this is what one of Job’s friends says after Job had lost everything and been afflicted by Satan. In Job’s time of trial, four friends come to visit him. They mourn and sit in silence with him for seven days. Based on the very long speeches they give after that, maybe they should have just kept sitting quietly.
Job’s friends bring their intellectual understanding of God. In the face of real life tragedy, their words are empty and meaningless.
Job says, “I have heard many things like these; miserable comforters are you all! Will your long-winded speeches never end?”
Dig into the book of Job and you will find a man who not only lives by the words, “Shall we accept good from God and not trouble?”, but also truly understands them.