Job 6:1-4 (NIV) 1 Then Job replied: 2 “If only my anguish could be weighed and all my misery be placed on the scales! 3 It would surely outweigh the sand of the seas– no wonder my words have been impetuous. 4 The arrows of the Almighty are in me, my spirit drinks in their poison; God’s terrors are marshaled against me.
On verses 1-4: To paraphrase Job, “There’s no way you can measure how much pain I am in right now (v2-3). For some reason I’ve become God’s target (v4).” The fact that the Holy Spirit allowed such words to be in the Bible shows that God wants us to be real and honest with Him about how we feel. Your emotions are not too much for Him to handle, so come to God honestly.
Job 6:5-7 (NIV) 5 Does a wild donkey bray when it has grass, or an ox bellow when it has fodder? 6 Is tasteless food eaten without salt, or is there flavor in the white of an egg? 7 I refuse to touch it; such food makes me ill.
On verses 5-7: Clearly Job is “not satisfied with what God had dished out to him” (Alden, Robert L. New American Commentary – Volume 11: Job. Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman, 1993. WORDsearch CROSS e-book).
Job 6:8-10 (NIV) 8 “Oh, that I might have my request, that God would grant what I hope for, 9 that God would be willing to crush me, to let loose his hand and cut me off! 10 Then I would still have this consolation– my joy in unrelenting pain– that I had not denied the words of the Holy One.
On verses 8-10: Now Job’s only hope is that he would die and know that at least he maintained his integrity by not turning his back on God. Notice that as much as Job wants to die, he is not contemplating suicide. Rather he’s longing for God to quicken the date of his death, “to let loose his hand and cut me off” (v9). Even in his immense pain, Job still had respect for the fact that God is the giver and the taker of life.
Job 6:11-13 (NIV) 11 “What strength do I have, that I should still hope? What prospects, that I should be patient? 12 Do I have the strength of stone? Is my flesh bronze? 13 Do I have any power to help myself, now that success has been driven from me?
On verses 11-13: To paraphrase Job, “Eliphaz, do you think I have all the strength to wait and hope for God’s restoration (v11)? I have no power in and of myself to get through this time (v12-13).” Job is aware of his own inability to go through this incredibly difficult time.
What can we learn from all this? Before we can experience God’s power filling our lives, we first need to come to the end of our own power. In those tough times when your pain is greater than your ability to persevere, when you realize that you do not have what it takes in and of yourself to get through, consider it a blessing. For God allows you to see the limits of your strength not to be cruel, but so that in our emptiness and lack we can experience God’s power working in and through our lives. The first step to experiencing God’s strength Is realizing my weakness and my desperate need for Him.
As Paul writes, 9 …Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:9b-10)
Heavenly Father, thank You that when I realize just how weak and limited I am, the next step is to invite You to do in me and through me what only You can do. Today I admit that I can do nothing on my own, so please come, fill me with Your strength and live through me. In Jesus’ name, AMEN!