My receiving news of a church brother’s desire for prayer prompted a review of the Bible’s book of Job. As detailed in the King James Version, Job was described as a righteous man who lived in the land of Uz. According to Job 1:1, “…and that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil.”
To say Job was wealthy for the period would be a bit of an understatement as the Word discloses he had born to him seven sons and three daughters. Job 1:3 denotes;:“His substance also was seven thousand sheep, and three thousand camels, and five hundred yoke of oxen, and five hundred she asses, and a very great household; so that this man was the greatest of all the men of the east.”
Job’s sons, according to biblical reference, alternated days during which each of them would sponsor a feast at his respective home. Their siblings were invited for them all to gather at the appointed place to eat, drink, and celebrate.
The bible outlines that when the days of their feasting were ended, Job sent and sanctified them. He rose early in the morning and offered burnt offerings for each, reasoning, “It may be that my sons have sinned, and cursed God in their hearts.” And so it was that their father would continuously seek forgiveness for sins he thought his children might have committed.
As the account dictates, Satan actually went before God and more-or-less petitioned the Creator for freedom to afflict Job as a means of attempting to disprove his loyalty. He was eventually permitted to “try” God’s devoted servant in every way with exception of the fact Satan wasn’t allowed to “touch his soul.” The extent of the trials went beyond anything Job, as a servant of God, ever imagined would come upon him. In short, he endured the loss of his family members, possessions, land, and money.
Such has been a similar case regarding a member of our church by the name of Deacon Hill as, during the past few months, his wife of twenty-six years succumbed to a lengthy battle with cancer which, understandably, devastated him. A couple weeks ago, it came to light that his youngest daughter, Adrina, had been diagnosed with a golf-sized tumor on her brain which required surgery.
Fortunately, he reported the last week of October that she’d fared well during surgery and had been discharged from the hospital to return home. The day after Deacon Hill’s youngest daughter was released a twisted irony lay in the fact that his second eldest girl, Lariee, had to be admitted to the hospital the following evening. Doctors were uncertain as to the issue and exhausted a week and-a-half testing before discovering the cause. Ms. Lariee had suffered a blood clot, or Pulmonary embolism, in her lungs.
Remarkably, Deacon Hill has forged forward each day while noting, “All I know how to do is let Him do what he does.” We’ve spoken in person and on the phone, with me astounded at the level of faith he has in the Lord. Since our first meeting, he has demonstrated a sincere faith and dependency on God like none ever seen.
It’s relatively common for many professed Christians to readily volunteer that they have an unequalled faith. But the results of trials and the effects on the attitudes of those so-called followers of Christ can be utterly appalling. Deacon Hill, however, has proven one of the few who believes, according to directives laid out in Proverbs 3:5-8 (KJV); “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil. It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones.”
Admiration is extended to Deacon Hill as his position examples how all Christians should relate to the Lord. Job’s response could never be more applicable wherein he listed “Though he slay me, yet will I trust him…” words that set a Godly example.
To pose a question or share your opinion, you can reach Billy Howard at firstname.lastname@example.org or P. O. Box 8103, Jacksonville, FL 32239.