Hearing God’s Voice from His Word
James 4:8 says, “Come near to God and he will come near to you.”
Take a moment and turn your attention to God. Tell God that you desire to trust and obey Him. Ask God to speak to you from His word.
Psalm of the Day
Psalm 122:1-2 I rejoiced with those who said to me, “Let’s go to the house of the Lord.”
2 Our feet were standing within your gates, Jerusalem
Read the Entire Psalm
Praise God for the chance to be a part of His family and to gather with His church to worship. Being together as His people is His idea and it is a wonderful gift. Give thanks to Him for calling us and gathering us as His people.
2 Corinthians 1:3-11 – Christian Standard Bible
The God of Comfort
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and the God of all comfort. 4 He comforts us in all our affliction,[a] so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any kind of affliction, through the comfort we ourselves receive from God. 5 For just as the sufferings of Christ overflow to us, so also through Christ our comfort overflows. 6 If we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation. If we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings that we suffer. 7 And our hope for you is firm, because we know that as you share in the sufferings, so you will also share in the comfort.
8 We don’t want you to be unaware, brothers and sisters, of our affliction that took place in Asia. We were completely overwhelmed—beyond our strength—so that we even despaired of life itself. 9 Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death, so that we would not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead. 10 He has delivered us from such a terrible death, and he will deliver us. We have put our hope in him that he will deliver us again 11 while you join in helping us by your prayers. Then many will give thanks on our[b] behalf for the gift that came to us through the prayers of many.
Having God’s Ear through Prayer
- Express thanksgiving to God.
- Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal sin to you.
- Confess your sin to Him and receive forgiveness.
(1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sin He is faithful and just and will forgive our sins.”)
- Bring your personal requests to God.
(Psalm 62:8 “Pour out your heart before God”)
- Pray for someone in your small group.
- Join with others from River and pray for the River youth teams preparing to go on mission trips this summer. Ask God to provide the resources they need for their trips. Ask God to prepare the hearts of those they will be going to serve. Pray that they would be faithful in evangelism.
Living as God’s People by applying the Bible
Scripture Reflection from the Sermon
When read as a whole, 2 Cor 1:3-11 serves as a model for the Christian response to suffering, including traumatic suffering. In the midst of severe affliction, Paul reminds us of the importance of praise and worship to God, prayer, and Christian community. The church at Corinth would’ve gathered to hear this letter be read aloud. As they listened, they would’ve heard the voice of a bruised but not broken man calling on them to set their hope on the God who raises the dead. That’s the beauty of the church. God has given us his word, his Spirit, and his people as the means through which we experience God’s all-encompassing comfort. God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ comforts us through the Holy Spirit. Spend some time thanking God for his word, the means through which he has made himself known to you. Spend time thanking God for his Spirit, who indwells you, and makes known to you his comfort and love. Spend time thanking God for his people who have been God’s chosen means of bringing his comfort to you.