GRC ONLINE DIGITAL CARE GROUP #7
In our last care group session of the year, Pastor Darren Sim is joined by Pastor Josh Holohan and his wife, Lindsay Holohan, as they talk more about the topic: Overcome Intimidation.
Take part in this digital care group session on your own or together with your friends and family. Feel free to use this guide to follow the conversation with our pastors, use it for your own personal time of study, or to facilitate more conversations with your community.
This session is based on the message:
Joseph Prince—Understand The Times (Oct 10, 2021) [Sermon Notes]
- Judges 14:5-6
- 1 Peter 5:8-10 (NLT)
1. What is intimidating you today?
God’s Word tells us that the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8). For Samson, it was a young lion that came roaring against him (Judges 14:5) but today, our lion can look like an unfavorable health report, challenges in a relationship, or a negative circumstance in life.
“. . . . For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” — 2 Corinthians 4:18
Seen = Temporal
Unseen = Eternal
The devil walks about like a roaring lion. These challenges can seem like a roaring lion, intimidating us with a sense of fear and defeat but God’s Word says that what is seen is temporary, while what is unseen is eternal. Whatever challenge is coming against you right now is visible and because it is, we have the assurance that it is temporal and not permanent.
Talk It Over
What is intimidating you today?
Take a moment to think about what negative circumstance in life is
See your challenges through hazon vision, through the Word of God, and through the power of our Lord Jesus Christ.
The lion—a financial challenge, a negative health report, or family conflict—may look real in your life right now but the Word of God is even more powerful and more real. The Word of God is eternal, it is truth, it is strength, and it imparts to you the encouragement that you need to overcome this intimidation.
2. In the midst of your intimidation, you are not alone
“Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your family of believers all over the world is going through the same kind of suffering you are.” — 1 Peter 5:9 NLT
The family of believers all over the world that Peter is referring to in his letter reminds us of our very own family of believers here at GRC Online that is made up of believers who are all over the United States, Canada, and the world! We may be separated by time and space but we go through similar challenges and it is in the midst of a community of believers that we are able to encourage and lift one another up. When we stand in faith together, we can overcome all things.
God’s delivery system for His rhema, “right-now” word that builds us up and edifies us, is through the church.
Even when you feel like you have no faith, just by being in an environment of faith (i.e. Digital Care Groups, Sunday services), faith and strength are imparted.
3. God is able to bring something beneficial and sweet out of every challenge
“In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered for a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation.” — 1 Peter 5:10 NLT
In the midst of the challenging situation, the assurance that the Lord gives us is that it is for “a little while”—there will be an end to this challenge, and He will restore, support, and strengthen you.
While the Lord is not behind the challenge or negative situation, He is able to work it out for our good (Rom. 8:28), and just like the riddle that Samson shared in Judges 14:14, God is able to bring sweetness and nourishment for you out of all that the devil is trying to do in your life. Even if the devil has managed to attack an area of your life during this time, be encouraged and know that God can still cause something good and sweet to come out of it for you.
4. Own the Word
In this care group session, we learned that God is not behind our challenges and negative circumstances but He is able to work all things out for our good and bring something beneficial out of it. However, even in the midst of the challenge, there is strength and power found in community.
You are not meant to go through life on your own. The enemy’s tactic is to isolate you, making you feel like you are the only one facing this challenge when the truth is, there are others around you who go through similar challenges. When you choose to plant yourself in a community of grace believers, you can draw strength from God together and encourage one another.
OWN THE WORD
Reach out to someone
Take a step of faith and be vulnerable with a friend today. Or if the Lord puts compassion for someone in your heart during the day, reach out to them, text them, or give them a call to connect with them and encourage them in whatever they might be going through.
Grab a piece of paper and write down a promise found in God’s Word that you are claiming for yourself. If you are feeling the stress of work or life’s daily demands, you can write down a verse like Psalm 1:3, and personalize it like this:
“I shall be like a tree
Planted by the rivers of water,
That brings forth its fruit in its season,
Whose leaf also shall not wither;
And whatever I do shall prosper.”
Put up this piece of paper near your bathroom mirror or a place in the house where you frequent and whenever you see it this week, take a moment to verbally speak it out over yourself.
Questions about this topic
My problem doesn’t just feel like an accusation or intimidation. It is a real, concrete problem that feels impossible to resolve. What can I do?
We understand that some challenges, such as financial lack or conflicts in a marriage or career, need a tangible solution that seems beyond even human ability. The enemy often uses these challenges to intimidate you into believing there is no hope for your situation or that you have no choice but to suffer in your circumstances.
The truth of the matter is that while the problem before you is real, it has already been overcome by Christ Jesus when He bore all your sicknesses, curses and attacks on the cross. For example, if you are facing a negative health report, the devil wants to make you feel like you’re trying to get to the destination called “healed.” He tries to convince you that you must do your best to get there, when in fact you are already healed (Isa. 53:5). In fact, he is just trying to deceive you and steal your healing but you don’t have to fall for it!
Or perhaps you’re trusting the Lord for a breakthrough and answered prayers. The enemy may accuse and intimidate you with thoughts such as, “Look at how easily you lose your temper. Why should God give you favor in your career?” or “’You call yourself a Christian? When was the last time you read your Bible? Why should God heal your child?” When faced with this voice of accusation, it may cause you to doubt that God will answer your prayer. However, know that this too, is a lie. You can stand firm in your identity as the beloved child and righteousness of God in Christ, and know that it is not about what you do, but what Christ has done for you.
In these situations, no matter how hopeless or discouraging the situation seems, know that the Bible says that what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal (2 Cor. 4:18). The problem you see before you cannot stand up for long against the power of God and His eternal, infallible Word that brings life, restoration, and healing!
How do I overcome the challenges I’m facing?
We want to encourage you that no matter how tough the challenge you’re facing, you don’t have to overcome it by your strength, ability, or intelligence. Instead, you simply need to turn your eyes to God (2 Chron. 20:12). As you do this, hear Him say to you, “Do not be afraid nor dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours, but God’s…You will not need to fight in this battle. Position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the Lord” (2 Chron. 20:15, 17). As you go about doing whatever the situation requires, don’t worry or put your trust in what you do. Instead, rest and trust in God’s power and mercy that endures forever. As His power, wisdom, and favor come upon you through His Spirit, there is nothing that you cannot overcome!
While God is fighting your battle for you, you can do your part by feeding on God’s Word. The Bible says that the Word of God is living and powerful. It is so powerful that once released, it will never be ineffective, but always accomplishes and prospers what it was sent for (Isa. 55:10–11). As you feed on and discern all that Jesus has done for you on the cross, healing, wholeness and deliverance will surely come.
The only labor on your part is to labor to enter into His rest. When you are facing a challenge, you can say, “Father, I thank You this battle is Yours. Thank You, Father, You have overcome this problem for me.”
I’m discouraged as I feel alone in my struggle and no one understands. How can I find strength in this situation?
The enemy wants to make you feel that you are alone in your struggles and you are the only one facing these problems. By isolating you from people and leaving you with no support, he can cause you to fall into great despair and discouragement.
In actual fact, there are others facing similar situations as you. What’s more, God has never intended for the body of Christ to walk this journey of life alone. When you are facing challenges, getting connected with fellow believers is so powerful because you’ll realize you’re not alone in your struggles. As you share about your lives and stand in faith together, encouraging and praying for one another, something changes. You’ll feel the burden is lightened and as you encourage one another to keep your eyes fixed on the Lord and hold onto His Word, step by step, victory and restoration come.
At the same time, continue to find encouragement in Christ-centered teachings that focus on the Lord’s love for you. As you keep meditating on His perfect love for you, His love will cast out all your fears and anxieties (1 John 4:18). As you receive a rhema word for your situation, it will build you up and remind you of the intended outcome God has for your situation—to always work all things together for your good (Rom. 8:28) and to give you a future and a hope through His beautiful plan for your life (Jer. 29:11).