Something struck me about how James talks about the story of Job. The steadfastness of Job is pretty obvious. Though enduring unimaginable suffering, he does not curse God, but maintains his righteous trust in Him.
But what James points to, which I think is profound, is the “purpose” of the LORD. God wasn’t purposeless in what he allowed Job to go through. He had a plan.
And James describes that purpose as “compassionate and merciful.” Probably not the words that many would use to describe God’s purpose in Job, but it is. In the end, Job got something more precious than all the riches and relationships in the world. He saw God in a deeper and richer way than he ever thought possible (Job 42:5).
Was it worth it? Absolutely! Would we ever sign up for suffering like his? No! But that’s where we can trust God’s purpose and remain steadfast.