Week 4: The Promise of Purpose

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
 - Romans 8:28
 
God is always strong and present with His people, even in moments of crisis. He has a way of using those moments, personal or global, to further His purpose in our lives. In Psalm 23:5, David said that God prepared a table before him in the presence of his enemies. God has a history of providing nourishment and strength for His people even in the very presence of adversity. To bring about His eternal purpose, God can turn our troubles into triumphs.
 
There is no greater example of God’s purpose at work in crisis than that of His own story. The surrounding unrest and the very real questions of what to do overwhelmed the disciples as Jesus was taken from the garden, stood trial, and ultimately died. Yet, in the midst of the unrest, the promise of purpose was very much at work. Darkness, chaos, and suffering gave way to salvation, healing, and new life when Jesus arose, triumphant over death, hell, and the grave. That ultimate victory paved the way for God's children to overcome adversity for all of time, including this time we're living in right now! Even when it seemed as if His own story was going awry, God’s purpose was still present and at work. It may be Friday, but Sunday is on the way!
 
When we acknowledge that God is in control and has an intended purpose for this season, the next question for us is simple: what is that purpose? We might also wonder how to respond to the uniqueness, and even struggle, of this season in order to reap the benefits God purposes for us. We all recognize the unique nature of this opportunity, yet it is our individual response that will determine if we grow through this or if we just get through this. Our response will allow us to either thrive or simply survive.

Reflect:
What thoughts, feelings, or actions have come most naturally to you over the last few weeks?

Do you recognize any of those thoughts, feelings, or actions as specifically harmful or negative? If so, take a moment right now and ask God to help you with those responses. Release those thoughts and feelings to God, and ask Him to help you manage your emotions and your thoughts.

On the flip side, which of your thoughts, feelings, or actions have been positive? Have you seen yourself growing during this time? If so, pause and celebrate those things and thank God for the opportunity to improve and become more like Him through this season.

One of the most powerful promises we can hold on to in this time comes to us from Romans 8:28. And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

This Promise of Purpose reminds us that even though times may be hard, and our natural responses may be all over the map, God has the supernatural ability to work the circumstances for our good.

Do:
We believe Romans 8:28, but we are prone to the pull of emotions brought on by the constant barrage of reality. We have to take deliberate steps to silence the noise and embrace the promise of purpose.

1. Read, write, and claim the promises of purpose found in these scriptures:

Ecclesiastes 3:1
I Peter 3:15
Jeremiah 29:11
Romans 8:28

2. Adjust your inputs by turning off the constant stream of negative news and replacing it with the sound of praise and worship.

3. Ask the Lord what His purpose is for you during this season.

Lord, I believe that you are a God of purpose. I know that even in this darkness your light is still shining as bright as ever. I know that you work all things together for good for those of us who respond properly, and I know that You have a specific purpose for me. Help me to see Your purpose and to hear Your voice in this time. Help me to know how you would like for me to specifically respond.

Wrap-Up:
God has not been caught off-guard by this crisis. His purpose is at work, and we have the unique opportunity to thrive in Him in spite of what we see around us. We know that God is still in control and has wonderful intentions for His people. As we celebrate the glorious resurrection of our Savior, take hope in the fact that He is still working His purpose, even in the darkness.

Video devotions

For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. Jeremiah 29:11

God has a history of providing nourishment and strength for His people even in the very presence of adversity.  Kent Clark reminds us today that God is speaking to us in our confined spaces and purposes for us to have peace, in spite of the situation around us.
But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.  
I Peter 3:15

God has a rich history of turning troubles into triumphs.  Those who God has used have shared one thing in common:  God’s perspective.  Today, Tim Waters brings us the truth of what it means to have God’s perspective in our lives during this season.
He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set eternity in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end.
Ecclesiastes 3:11

God is always strong and present with His people, even in moments of crisis. He has a way of using those moments, personal or global, to further His purpose. Today, Teryn Spears challenges us to realign with eternal priorities and walk in God’s purpose for this season.

POA kids

Today’s POAKids Connection is quite exciting!  Rachel Smoak teaches us how to make a rainbow and reminds us of God’s promises.
Have your children gather these supplies:
-Food Coloring: Red, Yellow, Blue
-6 Clear cups or jars
-Water
-Paper Towels
Amber Eskew and Jessica LeBlanc share the promise of God’s healing for our minds, bodies, and souls using some really amazing miracles that Jesus performed for children! Download today’s devotion, gather your children around, and be reminded of the Promise of Healing.

Music devotions

Some through the waters and
Some through the flood
Some through the fire, but all through the blood
Some through great sorrow, but God gives a song
In the night season and all the day long
   -George Young

God has pushed the pause button on the busy-ness of our lives and wishes to speak to us as we sit paused in this moment.  Today, Kevin Howards challenges us to see that through the current situation, God desires to help us recalibrate, to hear His voice, and to align to the Kingdom call.