Prayer – What’s In It For Me?
by Janice Keats
Scripture Selection: Job 21
Why should we be compelled or expected to serve and honour God Almighty? Job asks, “Who is the Almighty that we should serve Him? What would we gain by praying to Him? (Job 21:15)
So, what’s in it for me? You might ask. What is to be gained from declaring God as the most High God? What did Job gain by placing his complete faith and trust in God? After all, he suffered so much. Despite the afflictions, he continued to believe that God would see him through the most terrible and darkest times of his life. Suddenly he was being afflicted with sickness and even death in his family.
In his suffering Job remained strong. His faith in God remained unwavering. That’s not to say that he didn’t have questions. He began to compare the righteous verses the non-righteous. Job wonders, “Why do the wicked live on growing old and increasing in power? They see their children established around them their offspring before their eyes. Their homes are safe and free from fear; the rod of God is not upon them.” (Job 21:7-9) He continued to spiel about the prosperity of the wicked. They want nothing to do with God. Yet they live a prosperous life and go to the grave in peace.
On one hand Job says that one man dies in full vigour completely secure and at ease, while the other dies in bitterness of soul, never having enjoyed anything good. Side by side they lie in the dust, and worms cover them both. (Job 21:23-26) So Job wonders what good it is to serve God. Even Job’s wife pleaded with him to curse God and die, but then we discover how righteous and firm his faith really is. His reply to his wife was, “You are talking like a foolish woman. Shall we accept good from God and not trouble?” (Job 2:10)
Peace is not the absence of trouble; peace is the overflow of a life under God’s control. God gives peace in the midst of trouble. So, what good is there
in praying? What good is having a right relationship with God? Romans 15:13 says, “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”
Our faith enables us to trust God in difficult times and in good times. We too will receive abundant blessings when we hold unswervingly to the hope we possess in God. After Job’s suffering God blessed him twice as much as before, making him even more prosperous with the land and cattle and his long and abundant life with his family.
Who is He this king of glory? The Lord Almighty – He is the king of glory.” (Psalm 24:10)
Janice is a freelance writer, and speaker. Her passion is developing and teaching workshops on various Biblical Studies, and planning ladies night out events. She is a certified lay Pastoral Counsellor and is presently employed in ministry. She has had several articles published in various local, provincial and national newspapers.
She is the author of, Poems of Inspiration and Occasion and, A Journey to the Heart of Evangelism. Future works include a devotional book and an audio book of her poems. She is married with three grown children, all of whom are accomplished musicians. Her twin daughters, known as The Keats, are country singers and her son is a recording engineer. Janice Keats; http://themasterspath.wordpress.com/