November 2, 2021 | Weakness

Like many kids in the upper mid-west, I grew up in a Christian family and the church was a very big part of my life. Most of my closest friends went to the same church and we hung out there every Wednesday evening, socializing, singing songs and learning more about God. Some of my fondest memories happened during those times and I’ll cherish them forever.


Unfortunately, I was more focused on the socializing then I was about the learning, so my relationship with God never really got past the superficial stage. Even though I went to church every Sunday, was very involved in our youth group and even led it for a while, I really didn’t get to know Jesus in a personal way. I thought my relationship with Him was solid, but I hadn’t gotten to really know Him enough to trust in Him completely, certainly not enough to surrender my life to Him.


Entering adulthood, I found out that all that my parents had told me of the struggles was correct. Bills needed to be paid, work needed to be done, relationships needed to be maintained. Eventually it all caught up with me and I found myself in a deep valley wondering where God was. Though I sought Him out, it seemed He was a million miles away.


It felt as if one trial always followed another and with each trial I got angrier and angrier with God. Eventually I decided to have it out with Him. The discussion often got heated but I eventually said, “If you want this life, you can have it!”


Out of my weakness, I had finally gotten to my knees in desperation and surrendered all of my selfishness, my short-sightedness and my lack of faith in one final attempt for salvation. It was exactly what the Lord was looking for.


It was then that the words of 2 Corinthians 12:9 finally made sense to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” It was then that I finally surrendered everything to Christ. Had it not been for that moment, I might still be lost in my selfish ambition looking for an answer.


Paul wrote those words in 2 Corinthians because, he too had his own past filled with moments of weakness when life didn’t seem to add up.


In his weakness he had moments when it seemed God didn’t care, when in feebleness he lashed out looking for the reason for his hardship. But he never gave up on God and, eventually, God made clear His path.


Psalm 34:17-20 gives the weak reason for hope saying, “When the righteous cry for help, the LORD hears and delivers them out of all their troubles. The LORD is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit. Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the LORD delivers him out of them all. He keeps all his bones;
not one of them is broken.”


That’s not to say that God only works through weakness. Of course, He can and does work out of strength also. But it is in our weakness when we often find ourselves more vulnerable and more willing to listen. In our frailty we lay down our defenses and ask for mercy. It is at these times that the Holy Spirit has greater access to our troubled souls. “Likewise, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words” (Romans 8:26).


When it seems that all is going right in the world and blessings abound, it is difficult for many not to get lost in the moment. To them there is little need for God because their need is minimal in their eyes.


But when times are harder and the world seems to be filled with only broken promises, it’s in these moments that we search for something to sooth out troubled hearts. Its at these times that we seek answers that only God can provide. It’s during these trials that we reach out to Him, sometimes even in anger. Out of our desperation, it is often in these stretches that we learn that God has been good to His promise to never leave us or forsake us.


Do you find yourself in the midst of trials? If so, trust in the Lord to be there for you, even if it seems at the present time that He isn’t. Surrender to Him and let Him show you the path to peace. Sometimes it takes getting to our knees before we let this happen, but it doesn’t have to happen that way. You can make that choice at this very moment. Come to Jesus and lean on His grace. Find your peace in the presence of your God. Please pray with me:


Heavenly Father, thank you for never leaving us in our times of trials. Forgive our impatience and lead us to a greater understanding of Your ways. Amen.