“I know that my redeemer lives,
and that in the end he will stand on the earth.” — Job 19:25
For many of us, there are those times in our lives when we feel defeated. Maybe we’ve work extremely hard at something, yet it all fell to pieces. Or there are times when things are going perfectly well, and then without warning, everything falls apart.
There are plenty of opportunities in life to give up. It could be an illness, the loss of a job, a betrayal in a relationship, or a multitude of other things that push us to our limits. For anyone (all of us) who has ever felt like giving up, Job has a word for you.
At the height of his afflictions, with the loss of his possessions, the death of his children, and a devastating illness that was literally eating him alive, Job had the strength to hold out and hope. In the midst of his troubles, Job said with the greatest confidence, “I know that my redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand on the earth.”
I love that; “I know that my redeemer lives . . .” No matter what happens to us — through trials and successes — we need to remember that our Redeemer lives. He sees everything, knows what we are going through, and can change everything in an instant. God was, is, and always will be. That’s what Job meant when he says that God will stand on the earth until the end. God has the final say. Our job is to never give up.
I once heard the following story from a colleague who runs rehabilitation programs for recovering alcoholics. A woman came to a meeting years after becoming sober and shared a story about not giving up. She told how she was an avid sports fan and when she had to miss watching an important game of her favorite team, she asked a friend to tape it for her. When her friend handed her the videotape with the recording, the friend said, “By the way, your team wins in the end.”
The woman began to watch the game. To her horror, her team was losing miserably. By halftime, it looked like there was no way they could make a comeback. She said that if she had not known that they would win in the end, she would have shut the game off. What was the point if they were doomed to lose? But she didn’t stop watching because she knew that all would end well.
The lesson is that we must never give up. Even the most desperate situations can turn around in a moment. We have to know that our Redeemer lives. As saying goes, “All will be good in the end. If it isn’t good, it’s not the end.” Don’t give up — God lives and His abundant blessings are on the way.
With prayers for shalom, peace,
Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein
Founder and President