Through Job's story, God offers paradigm-shifting insights to face suffering. In the first chapter, the drama’s Director tells us what the characters don’t know—what’s really going on. Job knew nothing about God commending Job to Satan and calling him blameless. God let Job face terrible trials with no explanation.
We share this in common with Job—God doesn’t specifically explain why He permits evil and suffering to fall upon us. He wants us to trust Him. In one sense, Job is everyman.
Bruce Waltke gives a helpful summary of Job:
In the prologue we observe Job as an idealist in elementary school (chaps. 1–2); in the dialogue, Job is a sophomore in college on the way to becoming wise (chaps. 3–3 1); finally the I AM speeches address him as a student in graduate school, where he is humbled and accepts that there are sufficient reasons to trust I AM without demanding of him rational explanations (37:1–42:6).
God values Job’s faith to the extent that He leaves out what to us seem critical parts of the explanation: God’s wager with Satan, and the fact that God had defended Job as blameless. But the Creator knows what Job needed to know and what he didn’t. He knows the same about us.
My study of Job has taught me many valuable lessons, including these:
Finally, check out this powerful rendition of the final chapters of Job, one of my favorite passages of Scripture. Similar to how life sometimes happens, you may or may not like this at first, but keep watching and I think you will.
For more on suffering, see Randy’s book If God Is Good, as well as the devotional 90 Days of God’s Goodness and book The Goodness of God (a specially focused condensation of If God Is Good, which also includes additional material).