Building On Hope: Lessons from the book of Job
Building on Hope is a set of lessons or play experiences outlining four themes found throughout the book of Job for use as a family or within children’s ministry. These themes explore God’s justice, God’s wisdom, God’s presence, and God’s comfort as building blocks for hope in times of trouble. The play theme for the curriculum uses LEGO to connect the narrative across the four lessons. Each session consists of a playtime where the child creates a "room"/scene related to the lesson, and with each successive lesson the rooms are stacked and added on top of one another. At the end of the four lessons, the child will have completed a four story high building which provide an object lesson on how we can build our hope in God when we face suffering and hurt.
Lesson Outline #3 God's Presence
Key Point / Topic:
God is with us in times of suffering..
Then the Lord answered Job from the whirlwind:
“Who is this that questions my wisdom
with such ignorant words?
Brace yourself like a man,
because I have some questions for you,
and you must answer them.
- Job 38:1-3
Then Job replied to the Lord:
“I know that you can do anything,
and no one can stop you.
You asked, ‘Who is this that questions my wisdom with such ignorance?’
It is I—and I was talking about things I knew nothing about,
things far too wonderful for me.
- Job 42:1-3 NLT
For Parents & Teachers
To know our God is the wisest and that He is in control is a wonderful thing, but how is our experience of suffering changed and transformed because of it? It is important for us also to see that God did not leave Job hanging with his questions and pain, but He came to Job in a massive whirlwind. Job encountered God in all His glory and power, and he found himself, and his present condition, exceptionally small compare to who God is and what He can do. Job didn't receive any answer as to why he suffered, but in the midst of his encounter, he found hope. This is one of the most important lessons in this book, as Job allows us to see that no amount of answers in logic and reasoning will we be satisfied, but only through the presence of God can we have our hope actualized. Ruth Barton wrote:
Thinking about someone is not the same thing as being in their presence.
We can know who God is, we can learn about His justice, His mercy, His wisdom, even His love, but without being in His presence, we would experience none of it. Hope and its transformative power can only be experienced through and in His presence.
Job 38 "God the creator met Job in a whirlwind."
*Have children name some of the greatest, most fearsome creatures they know.
In Job 38, Job learned that God's power and wisdom are beyond his understanding. It was not Job that created the world and all that is in it. It is not Job that can control the most dangerous and epic creatures in God’s creation. It is certainly not Job that has any answer to the meaning of his suffering. We are reminded that as God created the world, He have control over all of it at all time. He’s also not a God that stands far away from our hurts and suffering, but He wants to carry us through them. Like Job, we may not get an answer, but we have something better: The presence of God our Father!