Celebrate Your Weakness

Ben CerulloBy Ben Cerullo4 Minutes

The Christian life is never dull. In fact, my advice is to expect the unexpected! That’s not because God is fickle or inconsistent – He never contradicts Himself or wavers in His commitment to His promises. But misunderstanding God and forgetting His ways is your nature – and mine.

The principles of God’s Kingdom are upside down from the ways of the world. The fallen state of man perverts the ways of God and distorts our vision. You are unlikely to hear a motivational speaker proclaiming the blessings of humility or celebrating their dependence on anything. As a Christian, you must choose to intentionally feast on the Word of God daily and renew your mind.

Without a determination to draw closer to God, you will move farther away from Him. Decay and deterioration are part of the natural world. But He created you to be in a relationship with Him. You cannot reach your potential without being connected to God. He continually works out life circumstances to bring you closer to Him. Often, He uses the harsh realities of life to reveal His beauty and necessity.

Thorny Blessings

In his second letter to the Corinthian Christians, the apostle Paul shared an intense struggle that helped him grow to understand this concept. Plagued by what Paul called “a messenger of Satan” (12:7 NLT), he shared with them how he had begged God to remove an ongoing difficulty. But God replied:

My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness (12:9).

Paul grew to understand the blessing in this “thorn in the flesh” (12:7) – although Satan sent it, God put it to work in Paul’s life to lift him to his maximum potential. The compassionate heart of God went to the place of pain in Paul’s life and filled it with Himself! Paul’s inspiring response to the presence and power of God was this:

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 (12:10 NIV).

I am challenged by Paul’s words – I don’t often delight in the difficult things, but I recognize the wisdom of doing so. Our world is growing darker. Christians face
increasing persecution, and we need to grow stronger. Paul tells us to embrace our weaknesses so we can receive God’s strength!

No one enjoys feeling weak and powerless. We prefer the illusion of strength that comes with being seen as wise, valuable, and in control. But our preference for being self-sufficient causes us to fall short of God’s plans for us. Let’s avoid the trap of trusting in ourselves and learn to see the blessing in our thorns.

Prefer God’s Opinion

It’s pride that elevates our own thoughts above God’s Word – and separates us from God. Choose to love what God loves and hate what God hates. Pride is the first thing Solomon mentions that God hates (Proverbs 6:16-17), and it is another deadly trap we must avoid.

Don’t think you are better than you really are. Be honest in your evaluation of yourselves, measuring yourselves by the faith God has given us (Romans 12:3 NLT).

Do you see it? Faith, a gift received from God – and nothing we create or accomplish – is the measure of success. God’s purposes for our lives far exceed our ability. Embracing our weakness helps us to walk humbly and receive the gift of faith that leads us to victory.