Following Jesus on the path towards spiritual health sometimes leads us up mountaintops. Here, God’s presence is a tangible experience, and activities like prayer, scripture reading, and worship are fulfilling. However, as we continue to follow Jesus, we will inevitably be confronted with His crucifixion on the hill called Cavalry. This may seem like a place that leads to spiritual death, not life. Yet, as we follow Jesus up this hill, we will uncover a level of spiritual health we can’t find anywhere else.

Discussion Questions

Have you ever felt, or had a conscious awareness of, God’s presence? How would you describe that experience to someone?

Are our feelings always an accurate measurement of our spiritual health? Is it possible to have pleasant feelings when we’re spiritually immature and painful feelings when we’re spiritually mature? Why?

God is omnipresent, meaning He is everywhere at the same time. That said, why do you think we sometimes feel His presence as an absence (Psalm 22)?

If there was someone in your life who felt as if God were absent, how would you encourage them (Psalm 23 & 24)?

What have you discovered about God in seasons of life when He has felt absent?

Further Reading

Kindness Toward Ourselves

There is often enormous pressure to keep up with the non-stop noise and activity of our modern world. Jesus offers us an alternative to this frantic pace but following Him and resisting the pressure around us will require a simple act: kindness toward ourselves. Is...

Simple Unplugging

Our immediate access to people and information through the use of technology has become a prevailing cultural norm. What has become the normal daily consumption of input can have a numbing effect on our soul and lead to our faith gradually growing thinner and thinner...

Drinking Beauty

God paints on a large canvas. His creativity is seen in the grandeur of the mountains, in the wildflowers on a rolling hillside, in classic masterpieces in an art gallery, or in the curious expression on the face of a child. Beauty is all around us. But seeing it...

Pausing to Detach

So much about the pace of life conspires against us. We might even be convinced that the faster we go and the busier we become, the more we’ll get done. But what does that kind of toxicity do to our souls? Could it be that God invites us to find Him through a...

Never Give Up

Resilience is such a powerful concept. Some of our greatest heroes and inspirational characters in stories are defined as people of resilience. But what does it look like to have a resilient faith? Spoiler alert... it doesn't mean that things are always going to go...