- What suffering are you or those around you currently experiencing? Take a few moments to acknowledge it before the LORD.
- What does it mean to see our suffering as an “opportunity for growth”?
- Does Colossians 1:24 say that there was something lacking in Christ’s suffering?
- What purpose does our suffering have as a continuation of Christ’s suffering?
- What kinds of suffering do you recognize in your own life or the lives of those around you?
- What is the “mystery” that Paul speaks of in Colossians 1:27?
- What is the relationship between our circumstances and our identity?
- For what kinds of things did Paul say he was suffering?
- What is the location from which Paul is writing this letter? How does that inform the way you read this letter?
- How does Paul’s experience of suffering help you to understand your own suffering?
- What are you consuming to encourage your heart?
- Take a moment to take inventory of how you spend your time and what inputs you are allowing to influence your life.
- As you consider “community”, what need do you have to be connected to other people? What is the connection between content and community?
- What does considering Christ look like as you understand your own suffering?
- How would you respond to this quote about suffering?
“For whatever reason God chose to make man as he is—limited and suffering and subject to sorrows and death—He had the honesty and courage to take His own medicine. Whatever game He is playing with His creation, He has kept His own rules and played fair. He can exact nothing from man that He has not exacted from Himself. He has Himself gone through the whole of human experience, from the trivial irritations of family life and the cramping restrictions of hard work and lack of money to the worst horrors of pain and humiliation, defeat, despair, and death. When He was a man, He played the man. He was born in poverty and died in disgrace and thought it was well worthwhile.”… Dorothy Leigh Sayers (1893-1957), Christian Letters to a Post-Christian World, Eerdmans, 1969, p. 14