History often repeats itself. Whenever I read about the Israelites and their forgetfulness of God's deliverance, I am ashamedly reminded of how I tend to forget His help and head right back to the very things that were killing me. Scripture can be reflective of my attitudes and behavior. I find myself saying the same things as Paul, overreacting like Peter, doubting more than Thomas, and occasionally "getting it" like Hannah. Reading and studying Scripture can be convicting. There is no escape when self is staring back up at you from the pages of God's Word. Through character reflections, imperfections are brought out of hiding as God-breathed words hit wounded souls. Healing begins when vulnerability turns hearts back toward God.
During the Bible study portion of your small group, ask your group members to compare and contrast the Scripture being studied with their everyday life:
- Compare and contrast the nature of the situation at hand. How would this same situation be handled today?
- Compare and contrast the people involved.Do the personalities and reactions remind you of someone you know?
- Compare and contrast God's intervention. Have you had similar (or different) experiences with God's discipline/blessing/etc.? Explain.
- Compare and contrast the outcome. How has God been faithful in your life? Or, if you are still waiting for an answer, what hope of God's faithfulness do you find in this passage?
During the week, encourage each person to:
- Record the contrasts and comparisons on a sheet of paper or in a journal.
- Reflect on the similarities and differences discussed.
- Share reflections during the next meeting.
Comparing and contrasting God's involvement in the lives of people in Scripture with our lives today will strengthen our faith and increase our hope.