Day 10: Desperation and Faith (5:21-43)
(1) Pastor Cook talks about the importance of having faith in the midst of fear (pg. 40). What are some ways you have been fearful, yet God has granted you courage in the midst of seeking Jesus? (5:36, c.f 4:40)
(2) How has your faith anchored you in the desperate times of life?
(3) Not everyone receives healing. How can we persist in obedient trust in the midst of suffering and trials?
(4) Following up, discuss the difficulties we face in true faith by trusting God in both his timing and when He does not heal or do that for which we prayed (pg. 41).
(5) In our Christian walk, many times we desire comfort over holiness. In these moments of desperation and faith, how does God use these moments to drive us to the feet of Jesus where the real power of Christ resides? (pp. 41, 42)
My faith has anchored me in desperate times ONLY by His GRACE……He has kept me focused on His character, His faithfulness, His goodness, His love for me, His power…….all of this thru His Word, prayer, fellow believers encouragement, and sitting under good teachers………I think of 2 Cor 4:7-18…..treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us……….We do not lose heart. Tho our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day ( seeking Him!). And this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison………Praise God for His Grace………& may we show that more to others………
Regarding question 3, “Not everyone receives healing. How can we persist in obedient trust in the midst of suffering and trials?”
As I meditated upon today’s reading, my own life and this question in particular, four things come to mind:
1. Familiarity: Abiding in a daily, living relationship with God.
2. Honesty: Getting “gutsy” in my laments before God, as the Psalmists did. As Job did.
3. Humility: I’m not God – and God has dealt so graciously with me.
4. Community: Living in persistent, intentional community within my local church. Knowing others, and allowing myself to be known intimately by others.
Very helpful! Thanks, Cole!
I tend to like my comfort and awful lot. But it’s often when God makes me be uncomfortable or lets me become uncomfortable that I actually go to him and fall at his feet. I’ve seen him do so many amazing things at different times in my life when I was desperate and cried out to him. But admittedly I don’t cry out to him in the same way when I’m comfortable
I know what you mean, Pauline. I pray for that God would draw me near Himself, and often He answers in pain. Not that He desires me to be IN pain – or delights in the pain itself – but he delights in my dependence upon Him.
There lies the key, I think, Cole….DEPENDENCE ON HIM……He knows we can’t do it without Him….and we’re soooo much better off seeking Him and His ways……but We think we can or should be able to handle everything in our strength……that fleshly PRIDE!! OUR glory and not HIS!!! It’s like a parent telling child, “ You just gotta trust me that I know what’s BEST!!!! LORD, help us!!
In an odd way, God gives us the gift of being uncomfortable to draw us to himself.
Jesus heals the sick and revives the dead. He is able to move within any situation I bring to Him. In desperation, I cry out to Him when life is hard–it is by this dependence on the Lord that my faith is strengthened and I grow deeper in understanding Him a little more. He shows up–He’s always there–He is able.
God is able!
I’m learning when I don’t receive physical healing and the pain remains, that His presence and sufficiency also remain, then my gratitude grows as does my trust and love for God. Acceptance of the situation seems to make me more open to pray for and see how God is at work and to cooperate with Him, surrender my will for His.
My question: What is significance that the woman had been bleeding 12 years and the age of the dying girl was 12 years?
“My grace is sufficient.” He told Paul.
It’s true in our lives as well!
12 years is a good catch! I’m still thinking about it. I remember Pastor Cook noting that.