Did you know that many scholars believe that Job of Old Testament fame was an actual person? Many scholars believe this because the actual city that he was from is listed in his book. Scholars also believe that Job may have written this book himself.
The Bible contains so much wisdom for singles and the book of Job is no exception. Did you ever feel like you were Job? Job lost his family, his health, his money, but Job never lost his faith in God, and he never lost his love for God. As singles, we have lost—well, if we have never been married, we have never had a family in the first place.
Other singles may have gone through the challenge of divorce and annulment and have lost their family, just as Job did while others may have lost a spouse through death. Singles may have lost jobs or have gone through financial setbacks. Others may be facing health challenges.
Others may have lost homes or apartments due to the economy. Others may have lost jobs and lost their money. Others may have lost friends and suffered the death of a relationship by the betrayal of a boyfriend or a girlfriend.
Some of us may have had healthy families of origin; others may have had families of origin with challenges. Some of us may have parishes that we find community in while others may not have found those parishes yet. But the truth is, we all have God, His love, and that’s all that we need.
So Job is a man we can relate to but Job is also a man we can learn from. Here are the top lessons from Job, one of the great heroes of the Old Testament.
Have faith in God
Job is a man of incredible faith. Who wouldn’t be tempted to turn against God or accuse God if you went through what Job did? Scholars think Job’s troubles lasted a year in length.
And much of that time, Job felt that God was silent. In fact, God does not speak to Job until Chapter 40!
Throughout his ordeal, Job never loses faith that God will turn his situation around. In fact, Job’s faith increases during this trial!
Some singles may feel that their circumstances are similar to Job. We can learn from Job and overcome the temptations we face, just as he did. Instead of complaining how bad our trial is our how long our singleness has lasted, we can ask God for more faith and depend on our faith to get through this trial. God is author and finisher of our faith and what a beautiful virtue faith is! Faith can produce miracles.
Choose to love and obey God through your storm
Job is a man who develops the virtue of endurance and the virtue of patience through his trial. We see Job’s character develop through this trial. At the end, Job is stronger, wiser, more mature. His endurance and patience have grown, as well as his faith and his love for God.
It can be tempting during a prolonged period of singleness to say or think, I’m not going to obey God, I’m not going to continue to help others, follow the commandments, or pray. I’m not going to continue to struggle to live chastity, no one else in this society is. God must not care about me if I am still single.
No, as Catholic singles, we have to realize that during this ‘storm’ God is developing our character. He wants to see if we will still love and obey Him and love Him for who He is, not just the gifts He gives. Will we continue to love and sacrifice for others, even though we carry our own crosses?
The quickest path to happiness for singles is to get out of ourselves, go to a soup kitchen, help tutor the impoverished kids, volunteer to clean the church, visit the imprisoned, help a family member who needs help; encourage someone who needs it. There is always someone who has a heavier cross than you do.
As a Catholic single, choose to say, I love you God, even though I have no spouse and all my friends are married, and I feel alone, I know I am not alone and that you love me. I love you, I will proclaim my love for you all the days of my life, even if I have to go through storms, because I know you will bring good out of this trial and that you have a good plan for my life.
Know that God is in control
Job faced circumstances in his life that he could not control. He could not solve his problem on his own. The only choice he had was to choose his thoughts, words, and actions. He could only control his own behavior.
In the same way, singles may feel they are facing circumstances they would never have chosen but know God is in control of your life, ultimately. You can choose your attitude. You can choose not to complain, (this isn’t always easy) you can choose not to be bitter, or if you are, in Adoration, ask God to heal you of the bitterness.
You can choose to have a positive attitude in a difficult situation. You can choose to help others and to work on yourself. And you can choose to put yourself in situations and places (like on this website) where you might meet someone.
And like Job, you can choose to proclaim from the rooftops, “I know that My Redeemer lives!”
Job, great hero of the Old Testament, pray for us singles!