Prayer: Dear God, help us as we go through suffering that we may endure, grow in character and know a hope which does not disappoint. Amen
Reading: Romans 5: 1-5 (Click to read text)
Stop and GROW: After reading the text, discuss/ponder the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's Book of Faith questions, which are part of Camp Mount Luther's GROW Time with campers.
QUESTION 1: What scares, confuses, challenges, or doesn’t make sense to me in this text?
QUESTION 2: What delights me in this text or is my favorite part of the story?
QUESTION 3: What stories or memories does this text stir in me?
QUESTION 4: What is God up to in this text?
Reflection: We have all heard the saying, "If God closes a door, He always opens a window." That implies that as soon as the door is closed, it is time to move on. However, sometimes the window is not as obvious as we would like or does not open as soon as we want. Sometimes we end up enduring disappointment longer than expected and we end up knocking on that door harder and louder. Our character grows as we refuse to give up and in that character, hope grows and that hope does not disappoint.
Perhaps as we go through that waiting, watching and knocking, we are also building spiritual muscles; muscles we will need when that window appears or opens. Knowing we are stronger also deepens our character; a character in which hope has power. Hope and spiritual muscles will not disappoint us! --Ruth Gates
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