Before the Session
- Obtain enough index cards for each person in your group to have one
- Consider completing the following exercise yourself before you ask you group to do this experience
During the Session
- This exercise could be considered for a closing activity before your group prays to dismiss
- Give each individual in your group an index card and make sure each has a pen
- Emphasize I Peter 5.8 – Scripture tells us that we need to be alert. Often we let our guard down and allow the enemy to overwhelm us with parts of our life that may be considered suffering.
- Ask your group to write down an area of their life in which they consider to be experiencing some suffering. This question could bring up a variety of areas that your group considers suffering. There may be some in your group that are experiencing deep pain and they have not expressed it in a group setting.
- You might want to play a song while they write this down on their card. The song “Blessings” by Laura Story would be an effective song to play. You can find the link to the song and a video with lyrics below, or click here to watch on YouTube:
- After your group has had time to write down their area of life that they have experienced some aspect of suffering, ask them to write down some areas that they may have seen God present in the midst of suffering. For some, they may not have seen this yet. Be sure to acknowledge that it may not be obvious at this point, but for them to be aware of how God is working.
- Ask if anyone in your group is willing to share their area of suffering with the group. This could also be an opportunity for you, as the leader to be vulnerable and share some areas of your life where you have experienced suffering. Don’t miss an opportunity for authenticity with your group.
- Close this time with prayer.
- Ask your group to keep their index cards in a spot where they can access it easily. When they see God working or present in the midst of their suffering, ask them to write that down on the card.