Job Continues
I Long for the Past
1 Job said:
2 I long for the past,
when God took care of me,
3 and the light from his lamp
showed me the way
through the dark.
4 I was in the prime of life,
God All-Powerful
was my closest friend,
5 and all of my children
were nearby.
6 My herds gave enough milk
to bathe my feet,
and from my olive harvest
flowed rivers of oil.
* 7 When I sat down at the meeting
of the city council,
8 the young leaders stepped aside,
* 9 while the older ones stood
10 and remained silent.
Everyone Was Pleased
11 Everyone was pleased
with what I said and did.
12 When poor people or orphans
cried out for help,
I came to their rescue.
13 And I was highly praised
for my generosity to widows
and others in poverty.
14 Kindness and justice
were my coat and hat;
15 I was helpful to the blind
and to the lame.
16 I was a father to the needy,
and I defended them in court,
even if they were strangers.
17 When criminals attacked,
I broke their teeth
and set their victims free.

18 I felt certain that I would live
a long and happy life,
then die in my own bed.
19 In those days I was strong
like a tree with deep roots
and with plenty of water,
20 or like an archer's new bow.
21 Everyone listened in silence
to my welcome advice,
22 and when I finished speaking,
nothing needed to be said.
23 My words were eagerly accepted
like the showers of spring,
24 and the smile on my face
renewed everyone's hopes.
25 My advice was followed
as though I were a king
leading my troops,
or someone comforting
those in sorrow.