Scripture Focus: Job 30.24-28
24 “Surely no one lays a hand on a broken man
when he cries for help in his distress.
25 Have I not wept for those in trouble?
Has not my soul grieved for the poor?
26 Yet when I hoped for good, evil came;
when I looked for light, then came darkness.
Reflection: Help That Brings Hope—Guided Prayer
By John Tillman
One of Job’s complaints is that no one is willing to do for him what he has done for others.
Job’s hands helped the weak and struggling. He wept with the weeping and had compassion on the suffering. He acted, resisting evil with good and bringing light to darkness.
But when Job cried out for help, rough hands gripped him and added to his distress.
When Job wept, others jeered him rather than joined him.
When Job mourned, his friends soon laid accusations at his feet rather than compassion.
Salt, rather than salve, was rubbed in Job’s wounds.
The good Job expected from others turned out to be evil.
The light Job longed for was only more darkness.
Job experienced enmity rather than empathy and hurtfulness rather than helpfulness. Few have experienced Job’s level of loss, but all of us have had times when bad news or bad experiences seemed to pile on one another.
Let us pray this weekend, a prayer that we would be the kind of help that Job hoped for in the lives of those around us.
Prayer to Be Help that Brings Hope
Lord, let us see those suffering and bring them good things.
Help us follow Job’s model of righteousness and justice, bringing light to darkness and resisting evil with good.
Job lifted up the broken.
Strengthen our arms for lifting.
He answered cries of distress.
Sharpen our hearing. May no plea go unanswered.
He had compassion on the hurting.
Soften our hearts.
He wept for the troubled.
Open our eyes to weep.
He grieved for the poverty-stricken.
Let grief move us to action.
He brought hope to the hopeless.
May our hope be tangible.
He worked good things for those oppressed by evil.
Empower us to overcome oppressive powers.
He brought light to those in darkness.
Make us shine with your light.
May we become the kind of help that brings hope.
Divine Hours Prayer: The Refrain for the Morning Lessons
For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. — 2 Corinthians 4.6
– From The Divine Hours: Prayers for Autumn and Wintertime by Phyllis Tickle.
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May we run to Christ, the mediator that Job prophesied, with this confession…