Trial and Privilege

Series: Awaken | Week 5: Awaken to Position

Before diving into today’s reading, go to page 76 of your Awaken Guidebook and take a few minutes to complete the “Look Ahead” section.

Read 2 Corinthians 8:1-4 in your personal Bible or at the link provided.


  1. What was the position, or life circumstances, of the churches in Macedonia?
  2. What were they filled with and overflowing with?
  3. What was their response to giving?


The church at Corinth was asked to give offerings to the churches in Jerusalem. Paul wanted to inspire and challenge them by sharing about the believers in Macedonia. Even though they were in poverty and severe trial, the Macedonian churches gave beyond their ability, of their own free will, with great joy, even pleading for the privilege to participate. They could have opted out, but they didn’t. They were awakened to the position God had put them in and were generous.

In our own lives, we’re guaranteed to walk through hard seasons. Some of us are in a difficult economic time right now, possibly a severe trial or “financial perfect storm.” God knows each of our situations… He gave us our situations. And just like the Macedonian church, we’re invited to honor Him in whatever our circumstances might be.

The results of generosity, no matter your position in life, include abundant joy, an overflow of “far more” than you could imagine, and the privilege of sharing in the mission of the gospel. There’s no perfect circumstance in life when it comes to giving. What God is asking of you is a position of joy and an eagerness to participate in the privilege of giving, whatever season you’re in.


  • How does the example of the Macedonian believers inspire or challenge you personally?
  • If you were to define the “position” you’re currently in, how would you describe it? As you reflect on this current season of your life, what could abundant joy look like for you? What could generosity look like?
  • When is the last time you pleaded for the privilege of giving to the mission of the gospel? Is God stirring up something in you from today’s reading that would require a shift in attitude or actions?

As you process these questions, use page 77 of your Awaken Guidebook to jot down any key reflections or next steps. Be sure to bring your guidebook to your group! Page 78 is a great place to write down things that you want to process together.