“The Wednesday Word” Podcast & Devotional
We thought it would be a great idea to have a mid-week recap & refresh of Pastor David’s Sunday sermon. Let’s make sure that we are learning all we can from them!
Pastor David’s Wednesday devotional will be related to the Sunday sermon in some way. It could be an expansion on a theme, a different twist, or some kind of content related to Sunday’s sermon. Various staff members and parishioners will gather to discuss the devotional and how it relates to our lives and maybe give some practical application of the word.
You can listen to the audio version in your car, while doing housework, during your workout, or whenever is most convenient for you. We want you to be able to access it at any time that is the right time for you to have a few minutes to read and reflect on it.
Pastor David’s devotional for February 16, 2022
II Corinthians 1:3-4
3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.
Last Sunday I began my series of sermons on faith and mental health by preaching on grief. Grief is a normal and natural response to the experience of loss. And grief is something we all experience—it is part of the human experience. The experience of grief can be compared to a wave coming over us. When the loss we experience is big (like divorce or the death of someone close to us) the waves can knock us over and even overwhelm us. When the loss is not quite that big (like losing a job) the waves might knock us to our knees. When the loss is small (like losing out on time with family or friends) the waves leave us unsettled. No matter what the loss, once waves of grief begin, so does the grieving process. Grieving is what we do in between the waves, it is the process of adjusting and adapting so we can get back on our feet. Grieving is hard work, but especially when it comes to the bigger losses in our lives, it results in greater space between the waves, and shorter recovery when the waves do come.
Have there been times when grief has knocked you down? If so, what have you found helpful in times of grief?
The grieving process can include times of denial, anger, bargaining and even depression. Again, grieving is not easy! In the sermon, I mentioned that it is not a surprise that there is so much anger is our country, our community and in our schools right now. Anger is a symptom of grief (and high anxiety).
As you think back over the 2 years of the pandemic, can you see
any of the symptoms of grief in your life? What do you feel like you lost during the pandemic? Does the understanding of grief and grieving help you make sense of any of your experiences with other people?
The Bible has many scriptures that provide comfort and strength for people who are grieving. One of my favorites is Psalm 23, “Yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil for Thou art with me. Thy rod and Thy staff, they comfort me.” I also love Psalm 121:1,”I look to the hills. Where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord who created heaven and earth.”
Do you have a scripture or two that you lean on when life is painful? If so, which one or ones?
These kinds of passages provide comfort and strength to us because they are rooted in the promise of God. St. Paul, in I Thessalonians 4:13, said “We do not grieve as those who have no hope.”
What do these words mean to you?
During the sermon I mentioned 4 ways we could support others in times of grief. One way was to recognize that grieving is painful, and we can’t make it “all better.” What we can do is sit with people in their grief.
Have you had this kind of experience? If so, what was it like for you?
For me, sitting with people in their grief is an expression of love and concern. It is not always easy—it can be very difficult to experience a loved one’s pain. And it is not easy because it can be a reminder of our own mortality—one day people will grieve over us!
Can you think of other ways you have tried to express love and concern for people who are grieving? What are some of those ways?
Finally, in the scripture for this devotional, we hear that the God of all comfort comforts us so we can comfort others with the comfort we have received. I like that! When we are helping to comfort others, all we are doing is sharing something we ourselves have received from God. Think about that.
God bless you and stay well!
Podcast & Sermon Video Links
The Wednesday Word – Season 2 Episode 6 by Desert Spring United Methodist Church – Las Vegas (soundcloud.com)
“The Prevalence of Grief” Sermon Video