Friday of the Twenty-sixth Week in Ordinary Time
(Job 38:1.12-21.12-21.40:3-5; Luke 10:13-16)
The great theologian Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman wrote, “Ten thousand difficulties do not make one doubt.” Although today it is presumed that doubt is not disbelief as Cardinal Newman was implying in his statement, it still is a serious matter. In any case human beings quite naturally have difficulty accepting matters that they cannot understand. Job certainly does so, and today’s reading does not condemn him for the problem.
In answering Job’s complaints that he has suffered unjustly, God indicates that His purposes are more complicated than Job can imagine. God knows the intricate relationships among all components of heaven and on earth. Job only knows how to run a farm. But God mercifully addresses himself to the suffering Job lest he despair. Even though the response does not answer Job’s difficulties specifically, it does reveal God’s care.
Perhaps we cannot refrain from asking questions, but it is critical that we also do not stop giving praise to God for all the good we find on earth. Fuller answers about suffering and other mysteries will come in time, especially as we reflect on the mystery of Jesus’ death for our sakes. For now, however, we need to give thanks.