I have read Job several times and heard the story all my life. I am reading it again and I couldn’t believe it when I read that Job wished he had been stillborn. I have always skimmed right over that part, but obviously this time it caught my eye. Most of you probably know the story. Job’s name is synonymous with suffering in most of our minds. All of his wealth and possessions and his 10 children were destroyed in one day. His body was covered from head to toe with open, oozing wounds. He was in so much pain he wished he had never been born and he cursed the day he was conceived:
Job 3:10-19 “And why? Because it released me from my mother’s womb into a life with so much trouble. Why didn’t I die at birth, and my first breath out of the womb my last? Why were there arms to rock me, and breasts for me to drink from? I could be resting in peace right now, asleep forever, feeling no pain, in the company of kings and statesmen in their royal ruins, or with princes resplendent in their gold and silver tombs. Why wasn’t I stillborn and buried with all the babies who never saw light, where the wicked no longer trouble anyone and bone-weary people get a long-deserved rest? Prisoners sleep undisturbed, never again to wake to the bark of the guards. The small and the great are equals in that place, and slaves are free from their masters.”
I think this is heartbreaking and beautiful. I know I have written about this before (See Lucy’s Present) but I am so thankful that I don’t have to worry about my Lucy and my Jude. I never weep for them, I weep for myself, for the fact that I have to live without them. It is so comforting that they live in peace and that they feel no pain. About two minutes after Lucy died and two minutes into the worst pain of my life I thought, “Thank you, Jesus, that she never has to feel this pain. Ever.”
Job was in way more pain than I have ever been in. He mourned in silence for a week and then the first thing he said was how he wished he had never been conceived or that he had been stillborn. I think maybe he wanted to be stillborn because those babies are the only human beings who never have to feel pain or heartache or disappointment. They don’t even know what sin is. How blessed those babies are! This has reminded me today what a beautiful life Lucy and Jude and all the other lost babies have been given and from what pain and suffering they have been spared.