Then Job answered the Lord: "I know that you can do all things, and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted. 'Who is this that hides counsel without knowledge?' Therefore I have uttered what I did not understand, things too wonderful for me, which I did not know. 'Hear, and I will spek; I will question you, and you declare to me.' I had heard of you by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees you; therefore I despise myself, and repent in dust and ashes."
Job 42:1-6 (NRSV)
Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. James 4:8 (NRSV)
Paramytha Magdalena Sukarno Putri is from East Java, Indonesia. The year 2019 was a turning point for her, as well as one of the lowest times in her life. Her husband and Paramytha lost their first child, who was only four days old. She struggled to accept and understand why such a good and loving God would allow all this to happen. Often She has questions, and there are no satisfactory answers.
Paramytha had thought that believers would be blessed and spared from suffering and difficulties. But God helped her understand that all people experience suffering; there are no exceptions. God brought to her mind the story of Job, who was faithful and godly, but who suffered greatly. and even Jesus experienced great suffering on the cross.
Through her suffering, Paramytha realized that she doesn't have complete control over her life. Because of that, suffering can make people reject God. But at the same time, suffering leads us to a deeper knowledge of God. God longs for us to draw near and will enter into our suffering with us so that we may overcome.
Prayer: Dear God, help us to find you amid our suffering. Draw us closer to you, in Jesus' name. Amen.