SUFFERING – Week 3: 3/24 – 3/30
Lent is a time to identify with Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection. Each week you will go through a rhythm of looking to Christ, thinking about Christ, living like Christ, and worshiping Christ. Spend the week reading, reflecting, praying, and going to do likewise. Then come and celebrate together.
Look to Christ (Confession)
Read Isaiah 53:4-12
Lord, You come to me, but I do not recognize You; You call, but I do not follow; You command, but I do not obey, You bless me, but I do not thank you. Lord, You accept me, but I do not accept others; do not love my neighbors. Lord, You showed me how to carry out Your mission, but I still insist on my own; You identified with the poor and needy, but I seek my own wants and desires; You suffered and died for all, but I turn to my own comfort. In the midst of my lack of faith, You are always faithful! Please forgive and help me, You are the faithful one! Amen!
Think about Christ (Contemplation)
Read Mark 10:23-34
In our comfortable lives, suffering is strange to us. Suffering actually makes no sense apart from Christ. We are prone to avoid hardship, even less willing to take on pain. But in Christ, suffering has a purpose and is even for our good. Suffering moves us to identify with our suffering Savior, Jesus, and allows us to share in his blessings and glory. To the world, suffering is to be weak and last. But to Christ, the last will be first and those suffering in his name will receive blessings a hundred times more.
Live as Christ (Commission)
• Visit or call someone who is sick and pray for them. How can you serve them and bear their burdens?
• If you are suffering, what is God showing you about himself, and about you in light of him? Reach out to a brother or sister.
• In what areas are you quitting too early and not growing from perseverance?
• Surrender some of your comforts or privilege so as to identify with Christ. Where must you be last instead of first? How must you stop striving for the values of the world (riches, acclaim, comfort, luxuries, influencer, etc)?