Job had to do life with no answers and no explanations. When we read Job, we make the mistake in thinking Job knew exactly what was going on, but Job didn’t have the behind the scene information that we have in scripture. He didn’t know what was going on in the throne room of God, in a conversation between God and Satan.
Job had all his children and their families killed in one day and then he was struck by a debilitating illness, which had him rejected by society and using pot shards to scrape out his sores. Job had to do his faith one day at a time, trusting God one day at a time, even when Job did not have all the answers.
Fair weather faith, is trusting God as long as everything is going well. This is what Satan accused Job of when he stood before God, since God had placed a hedge around Job where Job was protected and Satan could not get to him.(Job 1:9-10)
“Does Job fear God for nothing?’ Satan replied. ‘Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has? You have blessed the work of his hands, so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land.”
Fair weather faith changes when circumstances change; when pain is encountered; when loss is experienced; when answers are not given etc.
Real faith however, digs deep into what we already know about God, His ways and His promises.
Job did that, in deep sorrow he immediately “fell to the ground in worship” (v20) “The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away, may the name of the Lord be praised.”(v21).
Job’s emotions were separate from Job’s faith.
What Job really believed, was still steady and did not change based on what he was feeling OR what he was experiencing. His emotions were created by God and he expressed his emotions with deep moaning. It was not a sin to express them, so Job tore his robe and sobbed, but Job never lost his perspective on God. He felt the deep loss, the disappointment, the heartbreak. He admitted his feelings to himself and to others, but he never lost his perspective on God: Who God was, His ways and His promises never changed in Job’s heart.
His wife however, had fair weather faith. In her loss and pain, full of emotion she said to him: “Are you still holding on to your integrity. Curse God and die!” Her faith was based on her circumstances, wanting good and blessing from God, trusting Him because then it went well for her. Job answers her from the Message bible:
“You’re talking like an empty-headed fool. We take the good days from God—why not also the bad days?”
I want faith like Job. Real faith that digs in to all I understand about God, His person and His promises no matter what happens in my circumstances. Faith that is rock solid that despite how tough things are, how much pain I am experiencing, I never lose my perspective of God and His love for me.
Rom 8:38-39(MSG) None of this fazes us because Jesus loves us. I’m absolutely convinced that nothing—nothing living or dead, angelic or demonic, today or tomorrow, high or low, thinkable or unthinkable—absolutely nothing can get between us and God’s love because of the way that Jesus our Master has embraced us.
- How much does “fair weather” in your life impact your level of faith? Are you a person who demonstrated faith only when things are going well for you and your loved ones? Having faith, as long as your prayers are answered?
- “Fair weather” faith has a lot to do with our expectations and view of God. What view do you hold – is it “curse God and die” or “take good days from God and bad days?” Does God promise that nothing bad will ever happen to you and your loved ones? Or is His worship still the start of it all?
- Our emotions can undermine our faith. When our feelings and thoughts overwhelm us, the focus on them can squash out any faith that is in our hearts. Sad, depressed days – have no faith/ cheerful happy days – have faith. Is the level of faith dependent on your emotions?
- Real faith digs deep into what we already know about God. Do you agree with this statement?
- What role does emotions play in our relationship with God? Are we supposed to ignore our emotions as we trust God?
Father please work into my heart a real faith that trusts You daily and is not dependent on my circumstances. I do not want to be a fair-weather believer. May my faith not change as quickly as my emotions, but despite my emotions let my faith be steady. I confess that my faith is not dependent on my circumstances, but on an unchanging God who loves me and is always working for my good. I confess that with God’s help, I will rise above my circumstances.
When circumstances are really difficult, my emotions can rule my life and my thoughts. Then add a season of slight depression (and these are regular in my life) and my emotions will undermine what I believe within a day. Although I know God does not promise me fair weather, it was an important reminder that my beliefs about God have to form a foundation to my life, that my emotions can float on top of. However, my emotions cannot determine what I believe about God.
Sometimes, it is more about just maintaining my faith, than seeing a change in my circumstances and emotions. I may not feel better at the end of the day, but my faith can be a whole lot stronger. It is a bulldog mentality that says I will trust God, no matter how I feel and how bad it gets. I heard it once said: “It is not a questions of whether I will survive these circumstances, but more, whether my faith will survive these circumstances?”
How I feel is real to me and cannot be denied, we know how depression can dominate a thought process.
How I feel is not the facts about God. God is still God, no matter how I feel.
I realised that it was time to get it clear in my head and heart what I believed about God, so that my emotions could not undermine that.