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Thanksgiving in Suffering – Devo Day 1

By November 27, 2023Daily Devotional

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 117

1 Praise the Lord, all nations!
Glorify him, all peoples!
2 For his faithful love to us is great;
the Lord’s faithfulness endures forever.

This is the shortest of all the Psalms. It is a call to praise. The psalmist calls on one of the favorite reasons for praise Praise God for is faithful love is great. Secondly he says, his faithfulness endures. He is faithful to be God and act in line with His character not just today, but always. His faithfulness to be faithful to his nature endures forever. Hallelujah! Read this Psalm aloud but make it personal. Speak to yourself. Replace “all nations” and “all peoples” with your name. Praise the Lord _____! Glorify him, ______ (Why?) For his faithful love to me is great; the Lord’s faithfulness endures forever. Hallelujah.

Scripture Reading
Hebrews 12:1-3 – New International Version
12 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

New International Version (NIV) Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Having God’s Ear through Prayer

    • Express thanks 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 Sarah. Ask God to encourage her and guide her as she serves overseas.

Living as God’s People by applying the Bible

Scripture Reflection from the Sermon

The largest question for humans has always been what to do with suffering. The technical term for a defense of the goodness and power of God in the face of suffering is “theodicy.” The Scriptures give seven large themes to answer the question. None by itself is the full answer, but all together they form the biblical response to our “why?”
The seven themes are: 1. Evangelism (God uses suffering to draw people to faith)
2. Growth (God uses suffering to “build our souls”) 3. Glory of God (God uses suffering to reveal his power and glory) 4. Sin (Human suffering is tied ultimately, and sometimes directly, to sin) 5. Satan (Satan is involved in much human suffering) 6. Mystery (Sometimes, like Job, we are not going to know why) 7. Cross (Jesus is the final answer to the question, “God, why don’t you do something?” God has done something: Jesus has come. God will do something: Jesus will return). Reflect on these biblical themes. Where have you seen them in Scripture? Where have you seen them in your own life?