A Sliver of Hope


“Yet the righteous hold to their way, and they that have clean hands grow stronger and stronger.” – Job 17:9

TODAY’S SCRIPTURE READING: Job 15-18

Can we be honest with each other? Job is a difficult book to read and study. This week, our Bible reading plan took us into the depths of Job as we begin to tackle topics such as Satan and suffering. As we read through Job, we witness Job’s struggles with his friends and his eventual questioning of God. Job is often revered as a man of faith and patience, but every one has their breaking point. Yet the most troubling part of reading Job is that I often find myself in themidst of Job’s story.

How many times does my faith waiver when I experience suffering? How many times do I question God when life deals me a rotten hand? How many times do I feel alone as I walk through the valley — even when I have friends around me? Job is a character that speaks to me because I can relate to Job. Maybe you’ve been feeling this way, too?

But even within all the suffering and pain of Job, we see a sliver of hope. In chapter 17, as Job prays for relief, he utters the phrase, “Yet the righteous hold to their way, and they that have clean hands grow stronger and stronger.” Job was a righteous man. He was a man who was “blameless and upright,” (Job 1:1) and “the greatest of all the people of the east,” (Job 1:3). As Job begins to lose everything around him — including his family — he mourned and then he worshiped God. And when Job continues to spiral into this sixth circle of pain and suffering, as his friends are urging him to give up, he utters the phrase, “Yet the righteous hold to their way, and they that have clean hands grow stronger and stronger.” It is the sliver of hope that keeps Job going.

If you are struggling…if you are hurting…if you are in pain…if you feel alone…if you are suffering, then I want to encourage you to remember that GOD IS WITH YOU. There may be times when you question God’s presence, but God is still with you. And the presence of God gives us more than just a sliver of hope — with God, we can receive a whole truckload of hope.

I want to leave you with the words to old hymn:

My hope is built on nothing less
than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
but wholly lean on Jesus’ name.


Have a great weekend and I look forward to being with you in worship on Sunday at 10:15 AM on YouTube!

Living with hope,
Matt

P.S. We are looking for volunteers to help with our worship services when we return to worship on the church campus later this month. Thank you to everyone who has already signed up to help! We need more. If you are willing to help, please e-mail me at matt@roystonfirstumc.org and let me know.