The Big Picture

 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17

May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word.

Talking to God

Thank God for giving you the blessing of hope on earth and in heaven.

Diving In

While it's easy for us to focus simply on the things around us, God always sees the entire story. Looking at life from our own limited view is like seeing the comic strip one frame at a time. Sometimes events in life may look disappointing. But we know that God sees the entire picture from beginning to end, and this knowledge gives us hope. Consider the disciples. While Jesus was on the Cross, His disciples must have felt confused and disappointed. They trusted that Jesus was going to be the Savior and King, yet He died. How could that be? God knew all along that Jesus would conquer death, but His suffering came before being glorified. Only after enduring three dark days without Jesus did the disciples start to understand the much bigger picture God had in mind. Because of Jesus' life, death and resurrection, our life in heaven is secure. We live with hope, not just for today, but for eternity.

Talking to Each Other

• What is something that's easy for you to do?

• How might this same task be complicated for a younger child?

• What is something that may be simple for God but would be complicated for you?

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From Focus on the Family's Thrivingfamily.com. © [2011] [Kim Washburn]. Used by permission.