TEACHER:  Ken Hicks

SCRIPTURES: Psalm 119:67, 71, 75

BOTTOM LINE: Before I was Afflicted …!

QUESTION: Could it Be our Troubles are a GIFT from God?

 

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let’s at least share the same definition of an AFFLICTIONSomething that causes on-going pain or suffering.  Webster actually says a cause of persistent pain or distress.

My guess is that MANY of us have had some season of our lives where we navigated an AFFLICTION of sorts.

  • Loss of a Job un-expectantly, w/ a low or no reserves to sustain financially.
  • Loss of a Child … I mean that pain might be one of the most difficult EVER!
  • Abuse you experienced along the way that literally in some way or another, often brings a persistent Pain and even sometimes Suffering into almost every single day!

You name it … the list is REALLY long of possibilities here.

Psalm 119:67, 71, 75 …“Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I obey your word.

 It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn your decrees.

I know, Lord, that your laws are righteous, and that in faithfulness you have afflicted me.

We talked about this word a moment ago … all 3 verses uses this verb AFFLICTED here … which comes from the Noun Affliction … an old word that means a cause of persistent pain or distress.

 

  1. BEFORE our Struggles: STRAYING
  2. DURING our Struggles:  LEARNING
  3. AFTER our Struggles:  KNOWING

 

The Psalmist declares that he now KNOWS 3 Things as a Result of his AFFLICTIONS:

  1. Everything God says is Right!
  2. God is Faithful, even in our struggles.
  3. God is involved in EVERYTHING that we experience!

 

APPLICATION:

STAGES OF FAITH DURING AFFLICTION:

  1. Our Faith OBEYS!  Now I keep Your Word he says.
  2. Our Faith AFFIRMS!  It is GOOD for me to be AFFLICTED.
  3. Our Faith GLORIFIES!  In faithfulness, You AFFLICTED Me!

 

5 Quick Suggestions of how we can Respond to the Struggles we Experience:

  1. Thank God for our Struggles!
  2. Look for the Fingerprint of God in our Life!
  3. Immerse Ourselves in His Word!
  4. Have FAITH in God!
  5. Share What We Learn!

 

This is that rhythm where we allow God to use Our Story for His Glory again!   We become uniquely qualified to share w/ others walking the same journey … we can say Been there, done that, go the T-shirt,  and that is so important!

Keep a journal … write down what God is doing … so we have it to look back upon too!  This will not only help US … but we can break it out when we’re walking alongside a friend too!

 

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