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Thanksgiving in Suffering – Devo Day 2

By November 28, 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 118

1 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his faithful love endures forever.
2 Let Israel say,“His faithful love endures forever.”
3 Let the house of Aaron say, “His faithful love endures forever.”
4 Let those who fear the Lord say, “His faithful love endures forever.”
5 I called to the Lord in distress; the Lord answered me
and put me in a spacious place.
6 The Lord is for me; I will not be afraid. What can a mere mortal do to me?
7 The Lord is my helper; therefore, I will look in triumph on those who hate me.
Read the Entire Psalm

Give thanks to the Lord… what can a mere mortal do to me? A mere mortal can actually do a lot. They can inflict physical pain or emotional / relational pain. What can they do in an ultimate sense? Even if a person were to take your physical life, God’s love would endure. If you have trusted Christ, you would be with God forever. Even if they withhold their affection from you or slander you verbally, God’s faithful love endures. Would your emotional pain diminish? Maybe, but you can be certain that God’s faithful love will endure. Give thanks to Him for His faithful love. Praise Him for His enduring love.

Scripture Reading
Hebrews 12:1-3 – English Standard Version
12 Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.

3 Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted.

The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.

Having God’s Ear through Prayer

  • Give thanks to God for His gifts and His goodness.
  • 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 refugees and international students living in Wichita. Ask God to use their time here to make His love known to them. Pray that they would turn to God and find salvation.

Living as God’s People by applying the Bible

Scripture Reflection from the Sermon

What has been your “go to” approach to dealing with suffering? Have you sought to “care less so you will suffer less”? Have you tried to live in a sort of denial, turning your mind away from suffering, hoping it will just go away? Perhaps you have just tried to get through the days, seeking as best you can to minimize pain. Even Christians, with a full Christian worldview, sometimes deploy less than fully Christian strategies for dealing with suffering. Pain hurts. No one likes to hurt. Even the one who “likes” physical pain and does self-harm does so because of some larger pain they are trying to deal with. For some, physical pain is a diversion from spiritual or mental or social pain. What is a fully biblical “strategy” for dealing with pain? That is what we will investigate the next three days, but for today, ask God to help you see where your current strategy is deficient. Then ask him to help you embrace a more fully biblical way forward.