As always, today’s scripture and discussion question are taken from the Finding Glory in the Thorns: Group Discussion Guide. As we did last week, we continue to dig deeper into this challenging but rewarding issue of sharing our stories and lives together.

“To keep me from being conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in my weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 CORINTHIANS 12:7-10

How much did Paul share about the specifics of his “thorn?” How do you maintain an appropriate level of privacy (or respect for family) while sharing your struggles with transparency and authenticity? The following verses are helpful in discovering God’s ways in this: Ephesians 5:33, Ephesians 6:1-4, Romans 14:13.

Instead of giving testimony about what God is teaching us, we can all have a tendency to fall into the trap of telling our stories like a droning novel. What is the difference between talking about your life’s circumstances and sharing your faith story?

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Today’s reflections are copyrighted excerpts from Finding Glory in the Thorns: Group Discussion Guide.