I don’t think there is anything more disturbing than the big nothing. The Big Nothing is just that – nothing. Nothing you can do about it, nothing that can be said. No ax to grind, no explanation worthy of the void.
The big nothing boils down to anything we can’t control. Your teenager comes home and mutters the word, “pregnant.” The one you love walks away. Your children fall away from faith. Suddenly you are unemployed. A doctor says one earth-shattering word: “cancer.” You face foreclosure. Banks hit you with ungodly interest rates and double your minimum payment because you went $8 over your credit limit. You don’t even water outside but your bill is $250. Gas prices soar, stock markets crash, people die and there’s a big nothing we can do about it.
At times like these we need to turn to the Book of Job. Job was a guy on top of the world. He had wealth, a huge family and oodles of faith. Then the devil approached God and said Job’s faith would falter if all were taken away. God believed otherwise and so an extreme test of faith assaulted Job. He lost his family in a freakish way, his wealth was taken away, and he suffered extreme health issues. His friends even turned on him blaming him for his misfortune saying that he must have done something wrong for God to treat him in such a way. But the beauty of the story is that Job got it all back in the end because of his faithfulness to God. He dug his heels in and would never back down about God’s goodness and dared not surmise why such travesty befell him.
Wake up! We as Christians follow the naked, bleeding one. His life was full of hardships. Why should our journey be any different? Our adversities mold us into different people with bigger hearts for others who suffer. But remember, we also follow the resurrected one in all his glory. So to suffer and follow Jesus brings resurrection of our true self – the self that is pleasing to God with a soul that shines with God’s own light.
So, do we stand firm like Job and Jesus and believe in God’s goodness no matter what? Do we live in the realization that all will be taken away from us eventually in this life? Friends and family will die, our health will fail, and we certainly can’t take our wealth with us. But that’s not the end of our story. Our reward will be great and all will be restored if we remain faithful, trust in a loving God and hang on to the fact that our faith matters. Time is fleeting, all deteriorates but one thing remains: our walk with the Lord. This is the good news! So walk the walk, the only one that matters – the big something – our walk of faith.
Ps 16:8-11: “I have set the LORD always before me…I will not be shaken. Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will rest secure, because you will not abandon me to the grave… You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.”