Faith is sometimes a discipline of delayed gratification. Shortcuts in character cannot be taken as God forms you for the ambition you have.
10 Then the word of the Lord came to Samuel: 11 “I regret that I have made Saul king, because he has turned away from me and has not carried out my instructions.” Samuel was angry, and he cried out to the Lord all that night. 12 Early in the morning Samuel got up and went to meet Saul, but he was told, “Saul has gone to Carmel. There he has set up a monument in his own honor and has turned and gone on down to Gilgal.” 13 When Samuel reached him, Saul said, “The Lord bless you! I have carried out the Lord’s instructions.” 14 But Samuel said, “What then is this bleating of sheep in my ears? What is this lowing of cattle that I hear?” 15 Saul answered, “The soldiers brought them from the Amalekites; they spared the best of the sheep and cattle to sacrifice to the Lord your God, but we totally destroyed the rest.” 16 “Enough!” Samuel said to Saul. “Let me tell you what the Lord said to me last night.” “Tell me,” Saul replied. [1 Samuel 15:10-16 NIV]
24 For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? 25 But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently. 26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. 27 And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God. 28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. 29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. 30 And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified. [Romans 8:24-30 NIV]
Q1: Are you a perfectionist? Do you have a fear of failure?
Q1B: Do you ever feel like you’re trying and failing over and over?
Q2: Have you ever heard the term “delayed gratification?” What does it mean?
Q3: What about “long suffering?” Is that the same thing as delayed gratification?
Q4: What does “success” look like to you?
Q5: Are there any shortcuts to success? (Winning the lottery, marrying rich, copying homework, etc.)
Q6: Why do you think God is more concered with forming your character than he is with making you rich, famous, or powerful?
Q7: How does God define success?
Q8: What are things in your character that need to grow or change before one of your goals or dreams can be reached?
Remind your group about:
- Skate Team. Monday nights from 5:30pm to 7:30pm. Details are on the website.
- Worship Concert. This Sunday, September 2nd at 5pm. Main Auditorium.