Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Trials of Job

Something you need to know about me---I am not a Biblical literalist. In other words, I don't think every story, and sentence in the bible was written by the hand of God. For me, the bible is a sacred book with leadings and lessons that are good for us all.

One caveat though.
There's one story in the bible that is just a load of manure. That's the story of Job. Job has a whole chapter in the old testament that chronicles his trials at the hands of both the devil and God. There's the rub---God was in on it.
Scholars say that the story is just an early lead in to the trials of Jesus.
Either way, I know folks that believe that God gives us trials to test our mettle and faithfulness. Pure, 100%, Grade A, baloney.
Plus, there's the old saying of "God never gives us more than we can handle" that comes out of that story. I believe there are many, many people worldwide that would have issue with that statement.

Here's what I think and why it applies to the picture below.
I think that God is a loving God. I believe that God loves me like a parent loves a child--only a million times more.
Would I, as a parent, put my child through an horrific trial just to find out if he has the wherewith all to get through it? Would I cause my child physical pain to see if it would break her spirit? Would I make my child so miserable as to push him to the brink of insanity?
Not unless I was a deranged sicko!
Why would anyone choose to believe in and worship a God that would do those very things?

I believe that God mourns our trials with us, both mental and physical. I believe, if we ask, that we can be given some reprieve from those trials by the loving hands of others here on earth. I believe that I can stand in God's place, just as Jesus did, to help relieve the suffering of others. That's the job he gave me when he created me.
And so, here's where the picture comes in. The man in the picture is my brother, JTF. Making this walk with his beloved daughter, LeAnn was a bit of trial for him because under those khakis he only has one leg. Prosthetics don't do well in sand.
Of course, he might not have been there at all. It was a motorcycle accident that claimed his leg. A woman turned left in front of him at a green light.
His work managed to find some loophole with which to fire him.

He unfortunately, had a motorcycle accident a few years earlier that trashed his other leg. What that means is, the leg that survived the accident was already a bit wobbly. It was then forced into being his primary, upright support.

That 'good' knee had finally had enough and had to be replaced last year. Physical therapy is challenging enough, without having the support leg being sitting on a prosthetic.

So, you can see where JTF might be feeling a bit like Job.
He doesn't.
He smiles and is just glad to be alive. I'm sure he has his days, just like any of us would. I believe he has fewer of them than the average person would.

Unfortunately, he has a new trial ahead of him.
Lung cancer.
I asked last night when he called with the diagnosis, "So, are you freaking out?"
"No, what good would that do? It won't change anything."

He will fight this battle, as he has the others--one step at a time. He maintains a positive attitude and tells me that's what gets him through.

Yes, treatment will suck eggs.
Does he blame God?
Does he lean on God to help surround him with good doctors, good friends and good family.

Prayers on his behalf are welcome.
Questions about whether God has some mission in mind,
not so much.


  1. Wow. I wish I had something more profound to say. Wow. I can't believe you said that. It's how I feel but I seldom ever come right out to say it.

    I'm sorry to hear about Tom. Today's chemos and treatments are amazing. I'll be praying for him. I love his attitude.

  2. CeeCee,
    I've been by once before and can't remember if I left a message, it was a long time back. Anyway since that time I've been following your niece, LeAnn's blog. She is such a sweet girl with a sweet heart and soul. I read her blog tonight and the comment you left her and I must say you gave me peace I hope and pray it brings the same to her. You have a wonderful peaceful way with words. My prayers go up for Tom, LeAnn, you and the rest of your family.

  3. Oh Ceecee. So sorry to hear about Tom. He's got a great attitude. Prayers in progress.

  4. God bless him and keep him. May the Lord provide you comfort as peace as well. Tom is in our prayers and will be placed on the prayer list at church as well.

  5. Your brother is a good, good man. I'm so sorry for what he's going through. He is very fortunate to have the family he does to support him. I will keep your family in my thoughts, CeeCee.

  6. I have always been troubled by the whole "God testing us" thing as well. It just doesn't make any sense I am right on track with you there.

    So sorry about your brother...but a great attitude is so important...for you and him.

  7. Thanks Aunt CeeCee. Sometimes life just sucks. Sometimes it causes me to question why I/we are having to go through this... it sucks... I appreciate your blog and your love for me !

  8. Oh my word, CeeCee! 2009 just needs to chill out, me thinks. Again, my thoughts are with you and your family. Your brother is a trouper. Wishing him the speediest of recoveries.

  9. Oh, Carla. I pray Tom will be OK. I totally relate with your what you've written. God would not condone these trials. He is a God of love. Your brother has been through and triumphed over so much. I pray this will be another victory for him. And he will do it as he's done everything else - one step at a time. Words to live by.