Handling Behemoths, Leviathans, and Those Other Monsters of Life

In the shadows of the farmhouse where I grew up, monsters dwelt. They hid in the barn after dark, in the upstairs midnight hallways, and most certainly underneath my bed. Big, hairy, but unreal, they prickled my skin, chased my feet, and mademy heart gallop. For a little girl sleeping alone with a mammoth imagination, some nights passed too afraid to stay under the feather ticks, yet too fearful to get out and run. Stuck, trapped, and scared by frightful fancies I cowered as if I had no way out. 

Perhaps part of those childhood fears are simply preparations for real life. 

Have you ever been in a situation which cornered you? Have you ever felt there was no clear direction or path to follow? Or have circumstances so tangled you, you thought release would never come, as if some unrelenting shackle would forever hold you captive? 

I have. Somewhere in life, probably most of us have been prisoner to “no-way-out.” Job in the Old Testament surely felt like that.  

When our daughter first became ill with a brain stem mass, I stayed away from the book of Job like the plague. As if it would contaminate me, bring something worse than the monster we already faced, I kept Job at arm’s length.  

I knew the story well, or so I thought. Job lost everything he possessed, one after another, cut from his life, until finally even his ten children were taken. Ten. Then Job himself suffered a terrible health crisis. 

I mean, who really needs to read that in the depths of a catastrophic illness and grief, I thought? 

Well, for sure, I did. 

Job became one of my richest and tenderest reminders then and now that God has all the Behemoths, Leviathans, and other monsters in the palm of His hand. 

Look now at the Behemoth, which I made along with you … God told a suffering Job in chapter 41:15. He is the first of the ways of God; Only He who made him can bring near His sword. (Job 41:19 NKJV)God has all the Behemoths, Leviathans, and other monsters in the palm of His hand Click To Tweet

Who Can Stand Against

God, the Creator and Slayer of Monsters, after decimating the Behemoth in Job 40, commenced to take on the Leviathan in the next chapter. Those powerful, almost unconquerable beasts vividly displayed to Job that God was greater than even the monster of his physical misery, loss, and deep grief. 

Can you draw out Leviathan with a hook,

Or snare his tongue with a line which you lower? (Job 41:1 NKJV)


-Will he beg mercy from you? 

-Will you put him on a leash for your girls?

-Will you make him a servant or play with him like a bird?

-Will you make a banquet of him?

-Will you fill him with harpoons or fishing spears?

No one is so fierce that he would dare stir him up.

Who then is able to stand against Me?

Who has preceded Me, that I should pay him?

Everything under heaven is Mine. (Job 41:10-11 NKJV)

Monsters real or unreal are not tamed by our own hands. The book of Job, probably the very first written book of the Bible, lays a foundation through the vast Sovereignty of God. Everything passes through a Loving Divine Hand. Perfect and Spotless. Righteous and Just.  

In Job’s eyes his situation felt impossible, more than he could handle, with no way out. But God opened an unseen reality. The picture turned from what Job saw, to something bigger, greater, and more magnificent than he could comprehend. In fact, Job never understood why all the tragedy occurred, but his sight moved from the monsters he knew to a Sovereign God he hadn’t before known. 

Things Too Wonderful

Then Job answered the Lord and said: “I know that You can do everything,
And that no purpose of Yours can be withheld from You … Therefore I have uttered what I did not understand,
Things too wonderful for me, which I did not know … I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear, But now my eye sees You. Therefore I abhor myself,
And repent in dust and ashes.
(Job 42:1-6 NKJV)

There is still that little-kid fear in us at times. Situations loom like monsters beneath the bed and in the corner. Through deep trials we discover “no-way-out” circumstances invite “one-way-up” reality. 

There may be things now which seem more than you can bear. But friend, there is no monstrous circumstance that can separate you from the arms of your Loving Father. He is bigger. He is greater. He is better.

No Behemoth or Leviathan has any power beyond His Sovereignty or authority. What Job recognized, we can too. He is completely able. No purpose of His can be thwarted. Dark shadowy corners reveal tiny glimpses of a glorious God. And from that view, we begin to see things too wonderful.



*Feature Photo by Catherine Kay Greenup on Unsplash

24 Replies

  1. Maria Martens Reply

    Thank you Sylvia, this fills my cup to the brim this morning! thank you for this ministry:)

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Thank you Maria. I’m glad you enjoyed it. And, thank you so very much for your ministry as well!

  2. Don Pahl Reply

    But he knows the way that I take, and when [after] he has tested me, I shall come out as gold!! Job 23:10

  3. J.D. Wininger Reply

    Amen. It’s been a while since I’ve read Job too. Need to correct that. What an encouraging post ma’am. Nothing can ever prevail against its Creator. What a wonderful promise to hold onto. Thank you ma’am.

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Thank you J. D. The book of Job doesn’t disappoint. I guess because above all, it is about a Sovereign God. Thanks so much!

  4. Sue Vogt Reply

    Thank you!!

  5. Nesta Volle Reply

    How is daughter now and how is the family.
    Thank you gor those thoughts and reminders that He remains Faithful

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Good to hear from you Nesta! We are grateful for God’s faithfulness through it all!

  6. Katherine Pasour Reply

    Nothing is too big for our God to handle. Thank you for this reminder of something that should be so obvious, yet we sometimes forget the majestic power of His love.

  7. Shamgar Reply

    I thought to know the story well too😅

    Praise the Lord, I needed it. Thanks for sharing 🤍

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Thank you Shamgar. I am glad you found it helpful. The faithfulness of God is always an encouragement!

  8. Yvonne Morgan Reply

    I recently read through Job again. It is a tough book but filled with Hope too. I enjoyed your message so thanks for sharing

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Yvonne, you are so right! It is a tough read. But I’m glad you discovered it is filled with hope too. I find the last chapters so full of God’s character and majesty I often read them on Sunday mornings just as an exercise which prepares me for worship.

  9. Sharon Reiss Reply

    Thank you. My husband of 35 years has glioblastoma. Sometimes it feels like a monster, stealing him from us. But then I remember Who reigns, and that NOTHING can separate us from His love. Thank you for this encouragement–I’ve never thought of these creatures as reminders of God’s supreme care!

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Sharon, I am so very sorry to hear about your husband. It must be so difficult. When our daughter had the brain stem mass, in the first weeks, the doctors worked under the assumption it was a glioblastoma. So my knowledge of it isn’t huge but I’ve experienced some of that feeling. In fact, her illness acted much like a monster stripping her of abilities, and it was very painful. May you find reminders through the valley of God’s faithful care and love. Thank you so much for sharing.

  10. Annie Yorty Reply

    Sylvia, this is just the reminder I need today. We need to bolster one another with the truth so we can stand firm in the face of life’s monsters.

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Thanks Annie! I’m so glad you found it helpful. You are right, the body of Christ is great “monster protection.” God helps us to bolster each other in the faith.

  11. Martin Johnson Reply

    Good points, Christianity doesn’t promise us an easy life, but that God is with us when we face the monsters of this life.

    • Sylvia Schroeder Reply

      Thank you Martin! I appreciate you taking the time to read and respond. Certainly your point is valid. We aren’t promised an easy life. I am so grateful for God’s presence in the face of difficult circumstances.