When I’m Hurting, Why Does God Feel Far Away?
Scripture Reading: (Psalms 22) (Psalms 42:9-11) (Matthew 27:39-46) (Hebrews 1:1-3) (2 Corinthians 1:3-4) (Please read and discuss with the questions)
Let’s face it, life isn’t easy. In times of loss, grief, pain, or doubt, it’s normal to have questions — and it’s okay to ask them. If you’ve ever tried to make sense of your circumstances, or wished life didn’t have to hurt so much, or wondered why God won’t fix what you’re going through, you’re not alone. In this 4-week series, we’ll hear about a few people from Scripture who know exactly what it’s like. With Esther, David, Peter, Amos, and John, we’ll explore hard questions you thought you weren’t allowed to ask, like “When people are hurting, where is God? When I’m hurting, why does God feel far away? If God is good, why do bad things happen? And when life hurts, is God listening?”
It’s ok to ask God questions and express frustrations about what He does or doesn’t do when we are hurting or in trouble. (Read Psalm 22, and Psalm 42:9-11)
- Have you ever gone through a hard time but felt like you were all alone? Why did you feel that way?
- What are some examples of hard times that could make someone feel abandoned by other people? What about by God?
- How does the author of this psalm manage to move from questioning God in verse 9 to trusting God would save him in verse 11?
When Jesus was suffering and dying, He cried out to God and quoted these psalms. (Read Matthew 27:39-46)
- Why do you think the question, “God, why have you forsaken me?” is in the Bible?
- When we’re hurting, what does Jesus reveal to us about what God is like?
Jesus does not abandon you. In fact, He does the opposite. In your pain, He’s not far away. He’s actually reaching for you. (Read Hebrews 1:1-3, and 2 Corinthians 1:3-4)
- When life gets hard, what are some things that help you pause and remember God is near?
- As of today, how would you (honestly!) respond to the question, “When I’m hurting, why does God feel far away?
- Remember this: Jesus does not abandon you. In fact, He does the opposite. In your pain, He’s not far away. He’s actually reaching for you.
When we’re hurting, it’s not always easy to remember or believe God is with us. Remember, you’re not alone if you’ve ever asked the question, “When I’m hurting, why does God feel far away?” The authors of the psalms asked the same question. So did Jesus. So have I. So have many people in this room. In your pain, God hasn’t left you. Jesus is present, He understands, He loves you, and He’s reaching out for you too. The question is, will you reach back to Him as well?
- Let us thank God for who He is, He is Holy, Glorious, Majestic, the Alpha and Omega and the Creator of the whole world. (Psalm 22:3)
- Let us remember how God came through for our spiritual ancestors when they were hurting and in trouble. And pray He will do it again for us. (Psalm 22:4-5)
- Let us pray for the Grace and strength to praise and worship God especially when times are hard. (Psalm 22:22-31)
- Thank God for He is the source of all our comfort, and He comforts us in our troubles. Ask Him to bring people into our lives who we can comfort just as He comforted us. (2 Corinthians 1:3-4)
- Pray for one another as needed.
- Next Small Groups February 15, 2023