Weekly Devotional~Strength in 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 about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 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.
2 Cor 12:9-10
One of the most difficult moments to practice complete submission is in times of great pain, physical or otherwise. In our pain and confusion we become weak and afraid, and are likely to turn from prayer and hope. What is convenient is worry and control.
We would be very wise to learn from Paul's experience with the "thorn in his flesh." The Lord humbled Paul and groomed him, keeping him focused on His power and less concerned with the world's ways. With the socially-driven thought processes of our time, and the ability to distract ourselves to the point of denial of our real lives, full trust and faith in God's plan seems more of a fantasy than an achievable state of mind.
In everything, we should be consulting our Lord, first and foremost. As His partners in the great plan of the world, we need to go to Him with everything, and possess self-control in times of confusion and outright disagreement. Much easier said than done, of course; but very possible as seen in this example of Paul, and many others.
The Lord has shown us through our ancestors that when we yield to Him we are stronger, for He is able to work without our interference. By His great love we are given free will, and at times, it certainly throws a wrench into His plan. Even though, by His great power we are able to rise from these moments of despair and be more than we ever imagined. To submit to Him, no matter when, takes humility and confidence in our salvation. Each time we take control of our own lives, we are practicing pride and a strong doubt of Jesus' work on the cross.
This week, find the time to acknowledge the thorn in your side, and pray with thanksgiving for the humility it provides; we all have one. We may not be grateful for it all of the time, or ever, but that does not mean we are incapable of learning to appreciate it's presence. It may take a good long talk with God, but in the end we will see that His grace IS sufficient for us, and we are stronger for stepping down and letting Him keep control.