Job was a man who was sorely tested. No matter what hard things are happening in my life, when I read his story, I can’t help but feel like my life is not that bad! He was a good man who loved the Lord and yet, bad things still happened in his life. His animals were stolen, a fire burned up his property, killing his servants and the remainder of his animals, all of his children were killed in another natural disaster. After all this, Job still didn’t blame the Lord and praised Him instead.
If all that wasn’t enough, Job got sick, really sick. He got painful sores all over his body. Job started to wonder why such horrible things were happening. Hadn’t he lost enough?
Then Job got a visit from the Lord. God showed Job all he had created. He teaches Job that all He has created was done to help man learn about Jesus and to help us turn to Him, follow Him. After this lesson, Job understood that God sees a bigger picture. God loved him and wanted him to learn from the things he was experiencing. Then Job understood that the things we endure here are temporary and that one day we will stand before God to give an accounting of our lives. Job repented for doubting the Lord and asked for forgiveness. He promised he would trust in Him from then on. God healed Job and blessed him with more children and more wealth than he had possessed before.
It’s so easy to throw a pity party when life is not going the way we hoped it would. I’ve had my fair share of them, to be sure! Last year after a particularly rough year I came across a Latin phrase in a book: Per Aspera Ad Astra. It means “through hardship to the stars.” As I pondered on the phrase, I felt so much truth in it’s meaning. God allows our hardships because they are what refine us and make us fit for heaven. In every aspect of life, everything worth having or achieving takes effort. We should always shoot for the stars, but we must also understand that attaining them won’t come by traveling the path of least resistance.
In Job 38:7 we learn that the Lord taught Job that when we were in the grand council in heaven we shouted for joy as we learned the plan of salvation. We were so excited about the prospect of coming to earth. I used to think that we rejoiced IN SPITE of the trials we would endure. But the more I’ve thought about the lessons I’ve learned through the hardest experiences in my life, the more I believe that the joy we felt was BECAUSE of those impending hardships, knowing that it was those experiences that would challenge us and stretch us and make us more like our Savior and Heavenly Parents, growth that could come in no other way. The hardships are what would make us fit to return to heaven. The most beautiful part of the plan is that we aren’t left to face these struggles on our own. We have so much heavenly support and so many cheerleaders on the other side of the veil. Our Savior never leaves us and our Heavenly Parents do sorrow with us and reach out arms of comfort, because they know how much life hurts sometimes, even if it is necessary pain.
As we come to understand what Job learned, we will also fully put our trust in the Lord knowing that it truly is through hardship to the stars.
The Primary Manual for Come Follow Me is perfect for families with young children!
August Week 1 Lesson: August 1–7. Job 1–3; 12–14; 19; 21–24; 38–40; 42: “Yet Will I Trust in Him” (churchofjesuschrist.org)
Click below for FREE DOWNLOADABLE coloring pages from Rising Moon Adventures that I created to go with the above lesson and the story of Job:
Primary Insights for Come Follow Me videos –
Song 1: A Man Named Job by Ryan Proudfoot
Song 2: Broken Praise (Job) by Todd Smith