One of my favorite verses comes up in today’s reading. In recent days we’ve talked about boasting and struggles. While most of us don’t want to boast about the things that have caused us harm, sadness, misfortune, or weakness, Paul is giving us the nod to go ahead. It is especially powerful when we can see God working amidst our pain.
Have you ever cried out to God to take away a limitation, a struggle, a sickness, or some other challenge? Paul did, too. And here’s the promise from verse 9, “Each time he [God] said, ‘My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.’ So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.” God is speaking that into our hearts today as well.
Grace. It’s a beautiful thing. We don’t deserve it. But it is available to us, to shield us, to cleanse us, to sustain us. Hebrews 4:16 says, “Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” Jesus has given us a pass of admittance to approach our heavenly Father with confidence. We do not need to fear God. He stands ready to help us.
When we are unable to do something in our own strength, which is most of the time honestly, we can call on Jesus. One of the verses that has gotten me through a lot in my life is Philippians 4:13, “For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.” When we know where our strength comes from, we can focus on that with gratefulness and achieve so much more. Never be afraid to call on Jesus!
It is by grace that we have been saved, too! We don’t have to live perfect lives to receive God’s favor and eternal life. Although we should want to please him in by trying. Ephesians 2:4-5 says, “But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so much, that even though we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!)” We are stuck in our sins, no matter how hard we may try. God knows that. He wants for us to trust him. Why is it so hard sometimes?
In our weakness, God’s strength can shine through. Another great example of this is the life of Gideon. (Judges Chapters 6-8.) If you have some extra time on your hands you should read his story and recall how he, though not a powerful warrior, was able to defeat a huge army. And the shepherd boy, David, with a sling shot and a stone took out the powerful Goliath. In their weakness, they were made strong. How did that happen? God. It was all God. That power is available to us, too.
Take some time today to think through the areas in your life where you feel weak. Now that you know you have a solution, a source of strength in the form of grace, how will you respond?
Let’s pray … Lord, I give you my life today to mold and empower. I do feel weak and unable to do accomplish all the tasks I have set for myself. Help me to be mindful of what is important. Give me grace to move and be a light for you in this dark world. In my weakness, may you be lifted up. In Jesus’ name. Amen.