Job’s Comforters. William Blake, 1805
Reflections of a recent anti-lockdown protest, unmarked graves at Kingston General Hospital and the residential school of Kamloops, and the struggle to sing the national anthem at a recent hockey game … they all came together this week as I considered the experience of suffering and what to make of it.
Naturally the experience of Job came to mind. A good and godly individual who knows his world fall apart as he loses his family, his health, his property, Job hurls his question at the heavens – ‘Why God?’ ‘If you are all knowing and all powerful, why do the righteous suffer?’ ‘Why am I suffering?’ His friends offer little comfort, repeating religious and cultural platitudes. Job’s questions are not answered by God either. But Job does come to realize that the experience of suffering is not to be equated with the absence or apathy of God. It is something we know as Christians in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus the Christ. And Barbara Brown Taylor writes in her book An Altar in the World that in fact ‘Pain is one of the fastest routes to a no-frills encounter with the Holy’.
You are invited to join in an hour of the worship of God – hymns, readings of scripture, sermon and prayers, including a celebration of the Lord’s Supper (so you are invited to prepare with bread and cup beforehand).
Have a look below at the Order of Worship and announcements for this Sunday. The service will be available online this Sunday from 10:20 a.m. at https://youtu.be/PrhBhq7cX7U and on the St. Andrew’s Youtube channel at https://www.youtube.com/c/StAndrewsPresbyterianChurchKingston