God frames the friction of our frustration in our favor.
Have you ever had a home improvement project go wrong? Share about that frustration.
This week, we continue our series, Fixer Upper, where we consider the next stage of renovation, one that includes sanding rough spots and demolishing walls to open up space for God to work out our faith. We learned that “demos are not the dream; the dream comes only through the demo.” Just as in the challenges of renovations, we too can fixate on our frustration and miss God at work in the midst of our troubles in life. The key is remembering the power of our Savior and His presence. He is more than enough to take care of any season of renovation! The purpose of this week’s discussion is to become aware of God working in the midst of our frustration and to encourage each other to seek after God even through our trials.
Read Exodus 15:22-27.
1. God had just delivered the Israelites from Egypt. How many days had passed since they crossed the Red Sea?
2. Turn back just a bit to the beginning of Exodus 15. What was happening in the first 21 verses?
3. What did the people do when they reached Marah? What causes you to grumble?
4. As their leader, what did Moses do?
5. How did the Lord provide for their needs?
6. In what ways have you discovered that the burden of life’s journey is not on you but rests on the strong shoulders of our omnipotent God?
7. How do you think God feels when people complain or grumble?
8. How will you ask God to help you the next time you are tempted to grumble or whine?
9. What other significant “piece of wood” can we look to when we feel frustrated or hopeless?
10. What was the ruling God gave the Israelites at Marah?
11. What does this teach you about the goodness of God?
12. How does the reality of Elim encourage you?
Spend time in prayer as a group. Ask God to empower you to know that every frustration we experience is an opportunity to trust God for His faithful provision.
This week was all about trusting God’s perfect sufficiency to meet our every need- that nothing is out of His wise and good control. Jesus promised that in this world, we will (not might) have trouble (John 16:33), but it is through these hardships He is training us to look to Him and trust Him. Encourage others to accept where they are in life and not to neglect inviting God’s support in order to catch a glimpse of His perfect design for our lives. Who may God be laying on your heart to share this truth?
We encourage groups to try the Discovery Bible Method as an alternative to these discussion questions. You will find details for this Bible study method here. For this week, please study Exodus 15:22-27.
1. 3 days
2. The Israelites were singing songs of praise and rejoicing over God’s miraculous delivery from Egypt.
3. They grumbled because they had no water.
4. He cried out to God on their behalf.
5. The Lord showed Moses a piece of wood to throw into the water to miraculously make it fit to drink.
6. Answers may vary.
7. He is provoked to anger, and His wrath burns against such people. (See Numbers 11:1, 10; 14:26-30.) Grumbling is more than an unpleasant disposition; it reflects ingratitude! It is a state of being self-centered. As Christ followers, we are to be grateful, generous and submissive to the power and plans of God.
8. Answers may vary.
9. The cross! The victory has been won. Jesus paid believers’ sin debt in full.
10. If they listened to God and did right in His eyes, they would not suffer the diseases that He brought on the Egyptians.
11. This teaches that He extends His grace to sinful people that do not deserve it. In fact, that is what grace is-unmerited favor- everything for nothing for sinners who don’t deserve a thing. God cares for us despite our complaints and heals us of our bitterness.
12. Even though we have desert experiences, God does provide those times of refreshment (see Psalm 23:2)