Only God Is Greater Than My Disappointment
weekend in review
Have someone read Matthew 19:26.
This verse is the basis for our Only God series. This week we look at how only God is greater than my disappointment. Each of us at one time or another has experienced disappointments in life, and it’s not unlikely that we will again in the future.
The book of Psalms is a collection of sacred poems, often containing prayers, gathered by God’s people over 2500 years ago. One of the things the psalms teach us is how to express our raw, unedited disappointments to God. We learn how to dispense with all the polite, positive God-talk and get real with our heavenly Father.
Psalm 77 was written by Asaph. He was going through a period of extreme disappointment, and apparently felt that God was being unresponsive to his pain, to his needs.
Begin with some conversation, checking in on how people are doing. You can talk about whatever you’d like, but here are potential questions to get the conversation going.
If your group is meeting for the first time or continuing after being off for the summer, spend time introducing new people and catching up.
How did you celebrate Labor Day this year?
What are you looking forward to this fall?
Think back over a deeply difficult time in your life. What predominant emotions were you feeling?
At the time, how did you think God felt about your situation, and what did you think he was doing?
Asaph showed us how we can talk to God when something has broken our hearts and we’re left wondering if we will ever recover. How has your response been to God in the past when you were in the depths of despair and disappointment?
Read Psalm 77: 1-6. What modern terms might people use to describe the psalmist’s condition? What question was at the bottom of his despair? What do these questions reveal about Asaph’s relationship with God?
In Psalm 77:7-9. Asaph raised many questions that pointed to his distress. Have you raised any of these questions to God recently, or do any of them resonate with you? If so, which ones, and what made you feel that way?
What are we reminded of about our God by the fact that he welcomes honest and vulnerable questions such as these?
There is a word in the New Testament that’s used to describe the painful experience of God’s silence: mystery. What is a great mystery in your life that you may never be able to understand or get over?
Read Psalm 77:10-12. This was a turning point for Asaph, when he brought to mind what God had done before. Gene encouraged us, when we find ourselves experiencing disappointment, to focus on God. He is the One who is GREATER THAN whatever we are facing.
Read Psalm 77:13-14. How can remembering how God has loved you in the past help when you experience times of adversity in the future?
What are some practical ways you can remember God’s love?
WRAP UP & PRAYER
Share prayer requests and spend time praying for each other.
Discuss how the group can be a source of encouragement, comfort, and peace for each other, especially when members struggle through tough times.
This week pair people up and ask that they text or write notes of encouragement to each other throughout the week.
Read Joshua 3. Spend time reflecting on where God has met you before in your life. Journal what comes to mind and, if you’d like to, bring that to share with your group next week. Spend time thanking God for who he is and what he has done in your life.
Pray that God would care and comfort the people who are currently struggling with discouragement or depression. Pray that God would show them his love and grace. Pray that people would place their trust in God, seeking to draw closer to him, especially in the difficult times. Ask that God would lead people down paths of healing.