I began this series with the recognition that, during my adult life there have been two dark nights of the soul. These “nights” were entire seasons of life, spanning years, in which God seemed absent or, at least, silent. I felt like God was “nowhere to be found.” The more I prayed, the worse my circumstances became. Or so it seemed.
I retained a level of faith in God. I tried. I knew, cognitively, that he promises to walk with me through the fire. Yet, I could not imagine what “good” God could possibly bring from painful circumstances and I could not feel him walking alongside me. My heart was conflicted. The words of well-meaning people seemed out-of-touch or unhelpful. The darkness remained, and it seemed endless.
Yet, the darkness lifted. And in this last season of difficulty, the story of Job ministered to me in an outsized manner. As I studied this book on existential “high alert,” and meditated on it for an extended period of time, God began a work of transformation in my heart and mind.
For that reason, I offer this eight-part series on the book of Job. For anybody, but especially for a person experiencing a dark night of the soul:
- 1. When it Seems God is Nowhere to be Found (Intro)
- 2. When the Darkness will Not Lift (How Job’s Suffering Speaks to Our Own Pain)
- 3. How (Not) To Minister to People in Pain (Be a Fragrant Aroma Instead of a Feculent Windbag)
- 4. When You Want to Yell at God
- 5. What to Do When God Enrolls Us in the “School of Hard Knocks”
- 6. Choosing our Inner Circle (Why the Friends We Pick Determine the Outcome of our Lives)
- 7. The One & Only True Hero (Why Jesus is a Truer and Better Exemplar Than Job)
- 8. In the Valley & Through the Fire: The Effect of Job’s Story on the Receptive Reader