Been plugging along in a, more or less “9-5”, facilitating the training and sending of missionaries. I don’t go out with the teams or teach them like I used to. I work half the night in the kitchen with a guy pluming new hot water pipes after changing the water heater. The buildings are old and so are all the pipes. It’s important to remind myself why I’m doing what I’m doing. “Where there is no vision, the people cast off restraint.” Funny thing is that no matter what we are doing, we are still human, sin is still at the door, and personal weaknesses abound.
Been thinking lots about this. Why is it that some things just persist year in, and year out? I was reminded of this familiar passage and have been thinking about it a lot lately.
“…I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. 8 Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. 9 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. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
From 2 Corinthians 12:7b-10
Recently been frustrated by weakness in life, both personal and otherwise. Wanting breakthrough in areas but not getting it and asking God to fix and remove hinderances. Why doesn’t he? This scripture has been a huge encouragement to press on the way things are. Many times we think of weakness as health problems or personal handicaps, but looking at this scripture, we can see that the list is all inclusive covering even “insults, hardships, persecutions, and difficulties…” This means that even a critical comment from a person, a bad habit, financial trouble, or anything we find difficult, are all considered weaknesses… pretty much any pain or unpleasantness of any kind.
Carrying that on, we can assume that the things we might pray for God to remove are not only allowed to stay much of the time, but their irritating persistence pulls us down from pride and toward humility because with “weakness”, the power of God can flow through us more because they humble us, which gives more glory to God than when we are strong (and proud). It’s the kingdom economy where less of our own strength means more of God’s. The illusion that a being who receives absolutely everything from a Provider has any self-generated strength is comical anyway. But, as we all know, the persistence of this illusion is astonishing. So weakness outweighs strength. We can operate despite weakness, knowing that we have all we need to function, allowing God’s strength to flow through us even though we’re weak.
“If only I had more money.. if only that person didn’t have such power over me, if only this were present or that were absent. THEN, I could do what I’m called to do or be who I’m called to be. It seems like these types of thoughts are the very thing that stand in the way of doing the things they claim impossible. Even though weakness will always be attending, we can go from here, right now, today in the power of God knowing his grace is enough, no matter what troubles us.