When faced with difficult circumstances, we are not left to fate. The Bible shows how many of God’s people rose above trials and lived beyond pain.
Bibles, paper, pens, pencils, hymnals or songbooks
Connecting with the Scripture Topic
- What’s the strongest chemical pain reliever you’ve ever taken? How did it affect you?
- What’s the best non-chemical pain reliever you’ve ever used? Explain its effect on you.
Sharing and Receiving Scripture
- As we study the topic of resilience in the Bible, what do you believe helps Christians become strong in their walk with God? Draw a picture of barbells (for weightlifting) and name the weights after attributes you believe make you more resilient in the Lord.
- Thought Questions
- Job believed there was life after death.
- His sufferings developed his patience.
- Job persevered because he had hope that things would get better in this life.
- Despite the pain he was experiencing, Job knew God was compassionate and merciful.
- Job had better genes than we do. Over time we’ve deteriorated as a race and no longer have the stamina Job had.
What can we learn from Ruth’s radical commitment to her mother-in-law in spite of devastating loss? Read Ruth 1 and ask yourself, “Why was she so resilient?”
- Note how strongly Naomi urged her daughters-in-law not to go with her.
- If you read the story carefully, you will notice that people cry even when they are resilient in their faith.
- Ruth was impacted by Naomi’s faith, and she wanted to follow Naomi’s God.
- Verse 18 says, “Ruth was determined to go with her…” She made a stubborn resolve not to give up.
- She wasn’t resilient; she was so grief-stricken that she clung to her mother-in-law for security.
A little orphan girl named Hadassah persevered not only through childhood but as a Jew who became queen in a foreign land. Read Esther 2 for an introduction to her story. What part of her story inspires a resilient faith in you?
- Esther overcame the challenges of growing up as an orphan.
- I admire what she went through in the process of becoming queen; that couldn’t have been easy.
- It must have been challenging to live as a follower of God surrounded by temptations and luxuries.
- She took a huge risk in telling the king about a secret plot for his assassination.
- Her greatest moment was telling her husband (the king) about Haman’s plot to destroy the Jews.
Look up the following texts that discuss resilience and faith. Discuss how these texts can strengthen our trust when we face difficult circumstances.
Applying the Message of Scripture
Gather in groups of two or three. Choose one of the following options and work on a solution. Then report back to your group when your facilitator says time is up.
- Option 1: “I think God hates me. I think God is punishing me!” That’s what your cousin told you at a recent family reunion. Your cousin just lost his job, is going through a divorce, and was recently in a car accident. Based on what you’ve learned in today’s lesson, how can you encourage your cousin?
- Option 2: Just as you exercise to strengthen your physical muscles, you are now assigned the task of creating a “workout program” to strengthen a person’s walk with God. What elements are essential to your program?
- Option 3: Find a song, hymn, or psalm that speaks specifically to people facing difficulties in life. Read the lyrics or sing them together. Especially share with the group the parts (or verses) that encourage perseverance.
Valuing Scripture in Your Life
- What one thing did you learn in today’s lesson that encourages you to face difficulties with determination?
- Share that thought from Part A with the group and conclude with prayer, thanking God for trials that strengthen us.