Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Lessons from Job, Comforting those who Mourn

Job has some wonderful lessons.  For example, Job's sufferings are not complete when he loses all of his possessions.  They don't reach a fullness when his children die.  No, as he sits in the ruins of his house, covered in ashes and using a potsherd to scrape the boils from his body, his suffering reaches its peak when his home teachers show up to badger him into submission.

Doesn't everyone know that when you have grief or sorrow, what your life really needs is someone to shout at you?

Of course what they are really doing is trying to make sense of Job's problems.  They want:
  1. The universe to make sense.
  2. The universe to make sense in a way that assures them that they are innoculated or protected against bad things happening to them.
  3. Job to get over it so he is not a cloud in their lives. 
  4. To "help" without actually having to do anything.
To do that they are quite willing to increase his suffering, accuse him wrongfully, ignore the truth and mock God.  Which is why when God speaks from the whirlwind at the end, he condemns the so-called friends.

It is useful to compare the "friends" to a typical sister dropping by a meal packaged up so that there is nothing that needs to be returned.  Quick stop, a kind ear, food, and maybe a second sister with her to take turns with children or light cleaning while the other sits and listens.

Not that there are not women in the Church who act like men.  And not that there are not Riley Scott type men (he doesn't read blogs, so I can talk about him.  But I'm sure, when Christ comes, Riley will be there still helping people. I find in him a role model for many things I should do so much better) who drop by, fix things that you did not know needed fixing, and let you know that they care. 

But when I think of someone shouting at someone in grief or sadness that they have it wrong, doing their best to drown out the world and badger the sad, the lonely or the grieving into submission, I think of men or manlike women.  Guess I'm falling into stereotypes, since I don't think of the slimy, backstabbing gossip types as necessarily female.  The one I wrote a poem for was a man.

I'll rethink that (the don't act like a man in giving advice and comfort).  Maybe I can find something to criticize in Job's wife to even it out.

I think better is to think about, and suggest, that more of us act like a real man, like Riley Scott.

I know I had a series about how we all can't be like Jack Green or others.  But you know, we can all be more like Riley Scott.

And that is a good place to be.

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