Disappointment. Hurt. Pain. Discouragement. No matter how hard we try to avoid them, we ALL face hard seasons in our lives. And these difficult times can derail our good intentions and discourage us in our faith? So how do we navigate these times well? Do we wait until our circumstances get better or does God have something in these seasons that can help us grow?



We go through hard times for three reasons

  • We live in a broken world and bad things just happen and it has nothing to do with you or anything you’ve done.
  • Sometimes we make horrible choices that end with horrible consequences. “Do stupid things, get stupid prizes.”
  • God is trying to get your attention because you’re in sin


If you’re in a tough spot right now, walk through these questions.

  • Is your heart clean and your conscience clear?
  • Are you experiencing the consequences of bad choices?
  • Is there a pattern of unrepentant sin in your heart that this is highlighting in your life?


[Joel 1:1-3]

“The Lord gave this message to Joel son of Pethuel. Hear this, you leaders of the people. Listen, all who live in the land. In all your history, has anything like this happened before? Tell your children about it in the years to come, and let your children tell their children. Pass the story down from generation to generation.”





Some of you are facing VERY difficult circumstances

  • It’s knocked you down and you’re just sitting on your butt
  • You’ve been sucker punched you’re about to give up the fight




[Joel 1:14]

“Announce a time of fasting; call the people together for a solemn meeting. Bring the leaders and all the people of the land into the Temple of the Lord your God, and cry out to him there.”



[Philippians 4:6-7]

“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”



“Your ability to trust God is directly proportional to the peace you experience.”



[Matthew 6:7-8]

“When you pray, don’t babble on and on as the Gentiles do. They think their prayers are answered merely by repeating their words again and again. Don’t be like them, for your Father knows exactly what you need even before you ask him!”


  • God knows what’s going on in your life
  • Maybe he’s waiting on you to invite him into your situation
  • Maybe he wants you to surrender your need to control this to Him
  • Maybe he just wants you to be okay with him even if he doesn’t do what you want






[Joel 2:12-13]

“That is why the Lord says, “Turn to me now, while there is time. Give me your hearts. Come with fasting, weeping, and mourning. Don’t tear your clothing in your grief, but tear your hearts instead.”  Return to the Lord your God, for he is merciful and compassionate, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. He is eager to relent and not punish.”



  • Maybe you’ve just been unfaithful to God and you need to come home
  • Maybe you’ve read the books, watched the YouTube videos, talked to everyone else, EXCEPT God
  • Joel says to remember that He is “merciful, compassionate, slow to anger, filled with love that won’t quit, and is not trying to punish you.
  • You don’t need to keep God out any longer



Application Questions

1. What stood out to you from this message and why?

2. What is one thing God is telling you to START doing because of this message?

3. What is one thing God is telling you to STOP doing because of this message?

4. How will this message change how you act at home, work and in the your relationships?