What do we do when our own loved ones make it harder to be faithful?
Job is a righteous man whom the Lord richly blesses in wealth and family. Faithful and generous, Job carefully observes the commandments.
Out of seemingly nowhere, his abundance is taken away. Thieves steal his livestock and kill his servants, and a horrible accident kills all ten of his children. Next, Job is afflicted with an intensely painful physical ailment. Rather than murmur, he “sat down among the ashes (Job 2:8),” a sign of great sorrow and humility before God.
When his wife sees this, instead of offering support or strength, she derides him, saying, “Dost thou still retain thine integrity? curse God, and die (Job 2:9).” Job responds with faith and loyalty to God. But we can imagine how hurtful her words were to him at such an immensely difficult time, even if she herself was hurting.
“The Family: A Proclamation to the World” states that “Husband and wife have a solemn responsibility to love and care for each other.” While few of us will experience half of Job’s trials, many of us will know the pain of having a spouse or loved one doubt and mock us for our faith. We may wonder what will happen to us if our spouse is off the covenant path while we remain on it.
President Nelson has said, “If you are married to a companion who has broken his or her covenants, your willingness to let God prevail in your life will allow your covenants with God to remain intact. The Savior will heal your broken heart. The heavens will open as you seek to know how to move forward. You do not need to wander or wonder.”
While we do not ultimately know what choices his wife made, we know that even in his questioning, Job turned to the Lord and stayed true to his covenants. He saw the Lord with his own eyes and “the Lord blessed the latter end of Job more than his beginning (Job 42:12).”
Sometimes, the worst pain we can feel is the pain of feeling betrayed or abandoned by those we love most, but with God on our side and a testimony that our actions are pleasing to Him, we can weather even the toughest trials.