I enjoy the feeling of strength.
I am filled with such pride in myself when my son’s ball starts to roll into the road and I burst into a full-out sprint and save the day. I like being able to carry almost all of the groceries in the house in one trip just to falsely prove to myself that I could probably, on any given day enter a strong man competition and place.
I enjoy challenging myself with daily tasks to work on my physical strength.
Spaghetti squash is like a naturally grown medicine ball…til I snap back to reality after realizing ball slams with the yellow veggie aren’t ideal.
Being strong makes me feel confidence, control, and power. Those are good feelings. You know what I don’t like though?
I don’t like the inability to accomplish something in my daily routine because I’m not strong enough physically.
What about the other areas of life? The soul, the mind and the spirit? When I’m weak in those areas it is much the same feeling. I don’t like that feeling of powerlessness or lacking the ability to do something I want, but look at what 2 Corinthians 12:9 says about weakness:
“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 of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”
Uh-oh. Wait. What? Boast in my weaknesses? So like, let my facades down and be vulnerable and open with God and others? That’s not my favorite thing to do. I like to show people all the things I’m good at!
What are your weaknesses? It could be a life-long theme or it could be some of the negative emotions you are struggling through right now. Think about it, then pick three emotions. What are you feeling in this very moment? I don’t mean like, “fine” or “good” or “meh”. I mean actual “feeling” words. Anxious? Excited? Hopeless? Cheerful? Peaceful? Exhausted?
At any given moment, if you were to stop and give your feelings a name, you would probably realize there are ALOT of emotions you are experiencing all at once.
Can I assume that “overwhelmed” might be one of them? What about Hurt? Anxious? Crushed? Discouraged? Frustrated? Scared? Desperate? Hopeless?
I don’t like those ones. Nobody likes the negative ones, but can you identify a time in your life when you felt some of those?
Maybe it was that time your crush rejected you in front of all the other kids at school. Maybe it was the time you found out your parents were separating. Maybe it was when you found out about your husband’s porn problem. Maybe the time you got that diagnosis.
Life is hard.
When we experience those low times, our weakness...the ability to handle our emotions and control what is happening is exposed to others, and sometimes to ourselves as a new realization. We often wish we could change our circumstances to quickly make things “better again’. But what if those moments are the exact thing we need?
We tend to question God’s love for us in those moments, but what if that is His best way to show us His love? What if God brought you graciously to this low spot because there is no other way for you to experience His strength and love until you realize your own weakness?
He is passionately loving us by keeping us in that painful spot until we grasp what it really is to see His perfect power and strength at work. Sometimes I need to experience the lows and feel that uncomfortable, and sometimes pain-inducing weakness to be able to grow and realize that I really am strong when I have none of me left: when I am weak.
When I truly grasp that these hardships are graciously allowed in my life, I end up feeling more than content. I feel pursued and loved by God, my Protector who wouldn’t let me go on believing I’m strong when I’m weak. He puts me through the hard work of endurance so that the end goal will be His glory in me.
Verse 10 of 2 Corinthians 12 says,
“For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
Can you stop and identify a time in your life where you felt weak before you felt strength in the Lord? Or maybe you are in the low season right now and clinging to the Lord knowing that He has to be teaching you something? Don't give up!
The death of Jesus and his separation from God the Father was the most painful and low experience in history and it was for a beautiful and glorious purpose. It was so that you and I could find freedom from sin and have direct access to God the Father and the ability to spend eternity in heaven with Him. There is so much joy and celebration that comes from this seemingly weak moment when Christ died on the cross because there was a bigger purpose. Christ died on the cross to come back stronger then ever when He crushed sin and death for good!
Take a moment and identify where you are weak. Surrender it at the feet of Jesus. Ask Him to strengthen you for His glory.
About the Author:
Tammi and her husband, John, have 4 children and live in Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania. They enjoy hiking together, riding bikes, and swimming. Tammi is a Professional Counselor specializing in Family Therapy and loves serving in the middle school ministry at her church. Tammi’s favorite workouts are High Intensity Interval Trainings and a good old fashioned run!
Connect with Tammi: