Wednesday, January 19, 2011
The Book of Job
I've been sitting through academic performance hearings all week listening to the problems that can besige people's lives and affect their studies. I'm fortunate I never went through any serious calamities during my university studies. During the course of the week, there has been a few times when I've wanted to get out of my chair, walk around to a student and give them a hug and to tell them everything will be ok (I resisted though...I don't think it would've been appropriate).
Listening to the students' problems reminded me of a story in the bible I once had to read in Grade 8 as part of religious education (I went to a private catholic school). I don't remember much from the Bible but this story really stuck in my mind. It was from The Book of Job which tells the story of a pious character named Job whom Satan had thought was only pious because he had been blessed with good things from God. God believes otherwise and gave Satan permission to test Job's righteousness. That's when everything basically turns to shit for Job. Job's kids all die in an unfortunate building accident and Job, himself, is eventually covered in boils (the writers of the Old Testament sure like to inflict people with boils don't they). Nasty stuff.
But going back to the hearings this week...I really wonder about people's determination sometimes. It's interesting to see how easily some people can give in but others are just so determined to plough ahead. It's been a really draining week for me because some of the stories are so intense (I slept at 9pm last night) but it has been immensely rewarding too to get a sense of people's will.