Summary: This sermon deals with the stress we face when unexpected losses come into our lives. Job is the chief character.

Lord, This Really Hurts

NLF 2/8/2004 Job 1:6-22 Matthew 11:25-30

Our Bible Study this week involves the stress of loss. Today’s message is entitled, “Lord this really hurts.” Have you ever had to say to the Lord, or to someone else, “now this really hurts?” We are all going to suffer some losses as we go through this life.

It can hurt even more when our loss may be someone else’s gain. In the Superbowl last week, it was interesting watching the joy and sadness keep changing places in the faces in the fellowship hall during the second half of the game as the church aligned itself with either the Patriots or the Panthers football team. In the end though, those of us on the losing side was able to walk away with our loss saying “it was just a game.”

But in life, we can’t always simply walk away from our losses saying it was just a game. Loss can come to us in so many forms that affect us for a long time. Nine year old Jerry’s father has died from a brain tumor. Bob sits in his large spacious office with tears in his eyes after sacrificing himself for his company for 15 years.

He has a mortgage, a new car, and two kids in college as he looks at this piece of paper informing him his job has just been eliminated and this will be his last week . Tanya can’t believe after four kids and years of promises to marry her, Raoul has left with another woman and married her two months later.

Yesterday, at the Doctor’s , Jack’s life was changed when his doctor told him he had waited too late to come in and that the cancer had spread through his body and there was little that could be done. Mary was shocked that after 15 years of marriage, the certified mail she received yesterday was from the court with a complaint from her husband for a divorce. 19 year old Amy was simply out on her morning jog in the cool breeze, when a drunk driver swerved on the road, and left her paralyzed.

When things like this happen, quite often the question we ask is “why me. Why did this have to happen to me?” What we’re really saying is, “this is not fair. I didn’t deserve this.” Chances are, we’re right. We did not deserve it. But the problem is, there is nothing in God’s word that says life is going to be fair. The word of God clearly indicates just the opposite is true.

Eccles. 8:14 There is something else meaningless that occurs on earth: righteous men who get what the wicked deserve, and wicked men who get what the righteous deserve. This too, I say, is meaningless. This verse lets us know, that it is wrong to go through life thinking, if I just do what is right, everything is going to go well. There are people upset with God, because they feel life has not been fair to them. Does anybody know that life was not fair for God’s Son, Jesus Christ?

What we see in this world, is only a small part of what’s actually going on. There are beings in this sanctuary that we cannot see, but they are here. They affect our lives. They are part of the losses we experience.

The Bible tells us in 1 Peter 5:8 Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Our enemy wants to devour somebody here today. He wants to devour this church.

Sometime we will make the poor choice of allowing our losses to devour us. We refuse to move beyond them, and they become the determining factor for our behavior. We need to ask ourselves; is Jesus going to be Lord in this situation in my life or am I simply going to handle it in my own way? We can use our losses as either excuses to keep us from becoming what God intended us to be, or as changes in our lives that can draw us closer to God. Who is the Lord of your losses, you or God?

One of the most famous characters in the bibles for losses is a man by the name of Job. When Job enters the pages of the Bible, Job is walking as close to God as one person could get. Job is one of the few people in the bible that we know that God brags about in the heavens.

God’s blessings is on his life in every which way he could turn. Job has a large family, a lot of wealth, a great reputation in the community, good health, and a faithful wife. He’s doing his best to serve God.

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