Coronavirus Lessons from the Book of Job

Apr 20, 2020

Fr. Michael Schleupner offers today’s reflection, based on the book of Job. We look forward to welcoming Fr. Michael back to the Center for our August 16-22 Directed Retreat. If you’d like to learn more about it and more about Fr. Michael, please click here.

Coronavirus Lessons from the Book of Job

The Book of Job in the Old Testament is a classic story about the problem of human suffering. A good man, Job, loses virtually everything: family, health, business, livelihood. Some of his friends think this is an act of God. God must be punishing Job for some sin, something bad that he did.

But Job rightfully protests and refuses to accept that answer. He knows he has been trying to live a good life.

So, Job cries out to God and eventually, in a stirring dialogue, Job humbly bows to God’s greatness and accepts the mystery of life, including suffering.

I recall this book as we live through the coronavirus crisis. I do not believe that God wills this pandemic. I do not believe that God wants this suffering for us. I do not believe that God is punishing anyone with this. However, I do believe that we can learn from this – learn something of what God wants from us in this life.

Maybe that we become more humble, more aware that we are not in control of everything. Maybe that we become more unitive in spirit, more aware that we are one with others in our community, our country, and yes, our entire world. Maybe that we slow down a bit and really make time for the people in our life.  Maybe that we look for what we can generously give to assist and help others. Maybe that we live more simply, more according to real needs and necessities.

So, God is not punishing us with this coronavirus. But, God does expect us to learn and grow from this.

May the peace and healing action of Jesus Christ come upon us! Amen.

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