Dust and Ashes
Job 42:3-6 (NIV)
Then Job replied to the Lord:
“I know that you can do all things; no purpose of yours can be thwarted. You asked, ‘Who is this that obscures my plans without knowledge?’ Surely I spoke of things I did not understand, things too wonderful for me to know. “You said, ‘Listen now, and I will speak; I will question you, and you shall answer me.’ My ears had heard of you but now my eyes have seen you. Therefore I despise myself and repent in dust and ashes.”
After God put Job in his place by declaring the wonders of his creation and his power, Job could not say much more. You would think that with his suffering, he was already humbled. It seems like he became even more humble after God spoke to him. In awe and reverence, Job can only admit that he doesn’t know what he is saying and does not understand compared to what God knows. At this point, Job is despising himself and repent in dust and ashes. Job knew God, but through his intense suffering and his patient wait for the Lord, he started to come to a deeper understanding and knowledge of God.
There comes a time that after our own self-reliance and independence, we get to a place in our lives where we will go through trials that can lead to anxiety and mental anguish. This is the point where you realize how unworthy we are and we get to the point of where we do humble ourselves before God. James says in James 5:11 that “you have heard of Job’s perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy.” After Job humbled himself and repented before God, God did lift him up and restored him.