Back when Job’s body was covered with sores, when his friends were still against him, when he was bankrupt and sitting in a garbage dump at the outskirts of the city, Job had the temerity to say, “But He knows the way I take; when He has tried me, I shall come forth as gold” (Job 23:10).
Job makes three statements based on faith in the midst of his suffering. All three are about his God.
First: I know that God knows my situation. “He knows the way I take.”
Second: I believe it is God who is testing me. “When He has tried me.”
Third: I believe that after the trials have ended, He will bless me in a unique way. He doesn’t deny the trials, but there’s hope beyond them. God knows. God will reward. That’s what we find when we get to the last chapter of Job’s life.
Wouldn’t it be great if we could be in Job’s position at the end of the book without going through what he did through the book? How good would it be to gain his knowledge without all the suffering? Impossible! Stay realistic and realize that cannot happen. It takes fire to refine gold.
Just as we are different in our appearance, our background, and our levels of maturity and chronological age, so we experience different tests. For all you know, someone living in your neighborhood is going through one of the deepest times of her or his life.
I hope these two words will not seem hollow or pious when I write them: take hope. Take hope that this is not going on without God’s awareness. The Lord God knows the way you take, and it’s not without purpose. After the fiery trial you, too, will come forth as gold. You’re being refined by the test He’s allowed, and you’re being reshaped in the process—purified and humbled. Better times are coming. If not soon, and if not later on this earth, they will surely come when you stand before Him and He distributes the “gold, silver, and precious stones” [1 Corinthians 3:12]. It will then be worth it all. Many of Job’s rewards came while he was still alive on planet Earth. Yours may await you in glory. Either way, God knows. God always remembers. God will reward.
Excerpted from Charles R. Swindoll, Great Days with the Great Lives (Nashville: W Publishing Group, 2005). Copyright © 2005 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. All rights reserved. Used by permission.