On October 8, 2015, I experienced my Job moment.
I lost our fifth pregnancy suddenly and for no clear reason.
Within a couple hours of that, I got a call that my grandpa had terminal cancer.
Within minutes of that, I learned a marriage in my immediate family was teetering and possibly about to crash permanently.
Nothing prepares you for a Job moment.
No amount of Bible study. No number of friends. No degree of well-laid plans.
Like Job, my actions had nothing to do with the onslaught of life-stopping moments that hit me wave after wave that Thursday.
There I was. On my couch in a desert of despair and grief.
Yet the Lord was with me.
He sent me my Temanite, Shuhite, and Naamathite. And how lucky and blessed I am for it.
When Job’s three friends, Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite, heard about all the troubles that had come upon him, they set out from their homes and met together by agreement to go and sympathize with him and comfort him.
For three days I sat alone in anguish texting a few friends, trying to reorient my life to my vastly changed circumstances. My sense of security was shattered, my foundation in faith in limbo.
But that Sunday, I got a call from my Temanite.
“Amber, you’ve been on my mind,” my Temanite gushed in one breath when I picked up the call. “I have been praying for you since Thursday, though I don’t know why. Here we’ve been on vacation, and I just haven’t been able to get you off my mind. What has happened?”
Hearing how the Holy Spirit had been speaking to her in the very moments my world had come crashing down blew my mind yet sent chills up my spine. The Holy Spirit was living and active. He was acting on others’ hearts–on my behalf!
Then Monday night among my LifeGroup, my Shuhite flocked to me. In her hand she had a beautifully handmade card wrapped in miscarriage awareness ribbons and colors (I learned that later, that and that October was Infant Loss and Miscarriage Awareness Month). Attached to the card were my favorite Anne of Green Gables movies and an enormous caramel-filled chocolate bar.
This gift-giver didn’t need to say a word. The thoughtfulness and care with which she’d selected these items were just what I needed! My Shuhite!
My Naamathite presented herself in prayer that same evening. The group of us shared prayer requests and everyone formed a circle around me. My Naamathite wept from the floor behind me, just as loudly and unabashedly as I had in the privacy of my own room. As she prayed, each sobbed word uttered matched the anguish I felt. At once I was comforted and reminded through her lament of Jesus and that He too was weeping with us.
And that’s not all. I don’t have room to share the ways that friends, old and new, came out of the woodwork to provide comfort, a place to talk, a coffee, note, call, or just a hug. Countless friends and faces, messages from friends in other nations, cards from women I did not know!
My friends were Jesus to me during my Job moment. They lifted me up in prayer–I literally felt it. Because of it, I moved through the following months full of faith despite the heartache. Through faithful friends I gained access to a peace that truly passed all human understanding.
My Job moment was the worst. Yet God used friends from everywhere to help me witness and experience the best–Him.