Filling the Empty Places
Job 32: 25 - Job 39:1
I am going to be honest.
Job scares me.
I should probably clarify that I am not necessarily scared of Job, the man; I am scared of Job, the book. Reading his story brings out the realist in me and reminds me how fragile life can be. But experience has taught me that there is great wisdom found in each of the stories that have been included in the scriptures.
This weekend I learned a powerful lesson from the book of Job.
Do you know what it is to feel empty?
Have you ever faced one of those moments when you have nothing left to give?
Have the circumstances of life ever taken so much from you that it feels as if your whole soul has been carved out?
In those moments doesn't it seem that all that remains is a fragile vessel...left empty?
Who fills the empty places?
It was in the still moments of Job's life that the answer to this question became clear.
"Hearken unto this, O Job; stand still, and consider the wondrous works of God."
We must remember, God knew from the very beginning what was about to happen to Job.
He knew about the trials, BUT He also knew about the blessings.
And, more importantly, He knew about the learning, and what it would take to make Job's life experience complete.
He knew how to fill the empty places in Job's soul.
"I know that Thou canst do every thing...things too wonderful for me, which I knew not."
Although his life was filled with disappointment and discouragement, Job was blessed abundantly.
At the end of his life, every empty place was filled.
"The Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before...so the Lord blessed the latter end of Job more than his beginning." (Job 42:10-11)
Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin explains, "The Lord compensates the faithful for every loss. That which is taken away from those who love the Lord will be added unto them in His own way. While it may not come at the time we desire, the faithful will know that every tear today will eventually be returned a hundredfold with tears of rejoicing and gratitude." (Joseph B. Wirthlin, "Come What May, and Love It," Ensign, November 2008)
The Lord knows how to fill the empty places.
We may not understand how, but it will be done...in the Lord's way, and in the Lord's time.
The chorus of one of my most favorite songs teaches this principle...
What if Your blessings come through raindrops?
What if Your healing comes through tears?
What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know You're near?
What if my greatest disappointments, or the aching of this life is a revealing of a greater thirst this world can't satisfy?
What if trials of this life...the rain, the storms, the hardest nights,
Are Your mercies in disguise?
(Blessings, Mercy River)
What if those moments are what it takes to fill the empty places?
In the darkest moments we must remember the testimony of Job, "I know that thou canst do every thing...things too wonderful for me, which I knew not." (Job 42:2-3)
Things too wonderful.
In the empty moments we must hold on to that truth.
In those moments we must stand still, and consider the important lesson contained in the book of Job.
The Lord has blessings in store. Wonderful things, of which we know not.