Friday, March 27, 2009

We have the Power - (2 Cor 12:1-10)

Ok - first, I admit, been really swamped lately which led me to two things -  1) It led me to find and re-read this older devotional that I wrote a few years ago...but this also led me to 2) re-post here on my blog...the devotional hit me again this morning as I'm in a time where I feel "weak."  I pray it encourages you as well...

First things first - read 2 Cor 12:1-10 (click here).  Then read on...

Have you have ever felt overwhelmed, beaten down, or forgotten? by God? Or perhaps you wake up some morning and you just can't fathom facing another day. If so, don't worry, you are in good company.

1 Peter 1:3 tells us that "His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness..." That's an incredible promise. The very power of God is working in us, empowering us to live the life that God has called us to live. However, for many of us, we often feel like we don't have that power and/or cannot access it. So how do we access that power in our lives? I believe that part of the answer is found in the words that the Lord told Paul when He said, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." How can God's power be made perfect in our weaknesses? The answer is found earlier in this passage.

In verses 1-6 Paul writes about some incredible revelations that the Lord allowed him to see and experience. In fact, they were so great that there was a chance that Paul would grow prideful or become "conceited" as a result. Therefore, as Paul himself writes, God allowed a "thorn in the flesh" which tormented him. Paul, as most of us would have done, prayed for God to remove this thorn. However, God had other plans (vs. 9). In other words, one of the biggest barriers to God's power having full reign in our lives is pride or conceit. Pride takes many forms; some outward, some inward, some very damaging to others, while other forms of pride only hinder ourselves. Whatever the cause though, it is clear that God's power is most at work in our lives when we are most relying on him.

The opposite of relying on him is the many times when we choose to go it alone, also called "pride." In these times we almost forget to inquire of the Lord and draw on His strength and power. We instead get overcome with busyness and stop spending time with him. It is in these times that God often places things in our lives to bring us back to him. While we often feel weak in these times, for we may not be "doing" all that we feel we need to be, we are in fact strongest in these times. In other words, "...when I am weak, then I am strong."

I have personally found this to be true on many Sunday mornings as I lead what I think is a "mediocre worship set," only to find that God has used something to touch someone. It constantly reminds me two things; 1) It's God's Spirit that does the work in someone's heart, and 2) when I feel the weakest, that is often when God does His best work. In fact, I have learned to be wary of myself when I feel "strong" and often, those are the times when I usually spend more time in prayer, being "wary" of my strength.

So if you're in that place of brokenness, don't be too quick to get out of it - instead, take heart that God's power is strongest in you when you feel weak.

1 comment:

Jason said...

Thanks for your sharing, it is very refreshing to me. Indeed the heart is deceitful above all things (Jer 17:9) & we need to guard it well (Prov 4:23) so as not to let even a tinge on pride to seep into us & gives birth to death.

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