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It’s not hard for any of us to imagine how unsafe life can feel sometimes: people hurt us, plans fall apart, we face problems we don’t know how to deal with. As we follow Jesus into unsafe territory, even if he doesn’t move the mountains for us, he climbs with us. And as his children, we know God will always hold us, comforting us in his arms, no matter what we go through. Because the God of the universe holds us, we can rest and experience real peace, no matter what’s going on around us.

1. Remember forgiveness while waiting

Psalm 130
Leader Notes

  • Every family functions differently, and family plays one of the most significant roles in shaping who we become. Part of the journey of faith for each of us is learning to become socialized in a new family –– the family of God.
  • Forgiveness is the key to being part of God’s family. In order for a perfect God to have unbroken covenant relationship with his people, forgiveness is necessary.
  • He forgives us, and that is how we know we can continue to come boldly before his throne in seasons of waiting. The only human who’s always done the things that please the Father is Jesus, but through the sacrifice of Jesus, we also get to be God’s children (1 John 2:1-2).
  • Waiting takes shape in our lives in many different ways, but it’s hard for all of us. In seasons where things aren’t where we want them to be and we’re waiting for God to work, we know we can have hope because our lives are defined by the most significant miracle the world has ever seen: the resurrection of Jesus.
  • While we wait, it’s easy to give into doubts –– insecurities about who we are, fear that what we’re experiencing will never end. But what we’re waiting on is “small potatoes” compared to the work God has already accomplished through Jesus. So if you’re waiting, you don’t have to live in dread, you can live in hope.

How are you waiting on God right now? When you remember the resurrection of Jesus, how does that affect the way you’re waiting?

2. Trust like a child

Psalm 131
Leader Notes

  • Trusting gets harder the older we get. Kids are simple; adults are complex. The more we experience hurt and disappointment, the more we come to expect it, from other people and God as well. Trusting like a child begins with humility. They don’t try to take on more than they can handle or understand. When we trust God like children, we admit our lack of expertise and our own helplessness, and we simply come to God for help.
  • Children have a simplicity in how they relate to their parents –– they do what they can, and then they ask for help. They don’t qualify it or tell their parents how to do what they want, they just ask for what they want and leave it there, because if they have good parents they know they’ll get what they’ve asked for. We can have the same confidence that if what we have asked God for is good, he as a good Father will respond in kind.
  • We can take care of the knobs on our side of the wall, “quiet our souls” and let God do the rest. As we grow in Christ, we should become more humble, more dependent and more at peace, even in the midst of turbulent times.

What would it look like for you, personally, to trust God like a child? Spend some time in prayer, bringing your needs and desires to Jesus with the simplicity of a child –– don’t qualify anything, just ask him. 

3. The Lord remembers, invites and gives rest

Psalm 132
Leader Notes

  • David had a vision to build a temple for God, and that’s not what God was doing in his life. He had something bigger in mind. He wanted to build up David’s family to be the family that would eventually give birth to the Messiah.
  • None of us will ever dream bigger dreams than God. None of us will ever do more than what God wants us to do. But if you’re feeling forgotten, it’s helpful to know God remembers the plans he has designed for us.
  • Not only does the Lord remember us, but he invites us to rest in him because his plans for us aren’t just “so-so” –– they’re better than anything we could have picked out for ourselves!

How has God altered your own vision for your life? Is there anything God is asking you to give up so you might step into what he has for you? What dreams and plans is God inviting you into?

Optional Follow-up Questions:

  • What makes you say that?
  • How do you feel about that?
  • How would you explain your answer to a non-Christian friend or neighbor?
  • Why did God design it to work that way? Why not just do (whatever else) instead?
  • What would you say to someone who disagrees with that?
  • Why do we really have to do it like that? Why can’t we just go (some other route) instead?