May 30, 2024 Devotional

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.  2 Corinthians 12:9

When I was in high school, a buddy and I decided to get a membership to Gold’s Gym. I remember loving the times we went to lift weights and improve our muscle tone. We felt like we were getting stronger and stronger the more time we spent time working out our muscles to increase their mass. I can’t say my muscles are still like they were, but I wonder if those early days helped me on a life of health. We paid money to lift weights to get stronger. Yet, in our verse for today, the Apostle Paul seems like he’s saying the opposite. He’s saying that power and strength can only be shown in our weakness.

It makes no sense! How can power be made perfect in weakness? The answer, of course, is not physical, really, but spiritual and emotional. It’s that, in God’s economy and by God’s standards, what we think is foolish and weak (the Cross of Christ), God uses to be the source of power and wisdom, no matter what we face spiritually. Sometimes, we know the source of our troubles. Other times, we are only left guessing. For the Apostle Paul, he had a ‘thorn in the flesh’ which reminded him constantly that he was weak, physically. It also reminded him that in order to do that which God called him to do (preach the gospel) he would need to rely fully on the power and presence of the Holy Spirit and not his physical body or mind, his strength or wisdom.

Today, you may be afflicted with any number of things that you are allowing to hold you down or hold you back from what God is calling you to do. It could be fear or stress or insecurity. It could be back pain or disease or a physical limitation. No matter what, those things don’t define you. Your relationship with God defines you and through the infilling of the Holy Spirit for followers of Jesus, you are being strengthened, even in your weakness, and despite salvation you are working out in His power.

My favorite part of Paul’s proclamation for today is that we not only survive the weaknesses in our lives, but we can REJOICE in them. Joy is what fills you when you decide that your attitude is yours alone to control. If you are weak, then Christ’s power will rest on you and you can choose joy and gladness, no power-lifting needed. Spend time right now listing out the ways that your weakness is made strong in God’s power.