Do you know someone that has been through the ringer of life? They always seem to never catch a break or even just struggle in a daily manner. Whenever I start to feel like “the sky is falling”, I always am reminded somehow that someone else has it worse than I do.
Today I felt led to bring you to an amazing passage of the Bible that can encourage you or someone you know when you are on one of those “off” days or maybe its a season you have been through of constant pain and suffering. I want to encourage you today to hang tight with me and see what this Anchor of Promise is all about.
Paul, one of the most faithful and courageous followers of Jesus, who also wrote many books of the New Testament, and preached God’s Word. He lived a life of abandon for Jesus. He didn’t live a life of luxury for following the Lord. He didn’t have vacation homes or newer modes of transportation of that day. He was either in prison or starting a church. He realized life was about God, and living for Jesus meant forsaking the world and relying on God for EVERY LITTLE DETAIL, even if it meant being arrested.
We see in 2 Corinthians 12:7-10 his physical problem he had developed. Not only was Paul starved, beaten, arrested, had nothing to his name, now he has a physical problem that is limiting his ministry for God. But his ending realization of this problem is what is my encouragement for today.
“And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure. Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”-2 Corinthians 12:7-10
Paul didn’t have a literal “thorn” in his skin, but he had a physical problem that limited him. He pleaded 3x with God to take it away but He never did. God had all the power to do it. Paul saw the miracles God performed in his own life from freeing him from jail to just providing his needs. Paul realizes that through this physical problem, it made him depend on God. It humbled him and even brought him joy! (vs.9)
God’s power is best displayed against the backdrop of human weaknesses so that God alone is praised. Rather than removing the problem, God gave him grace through it (The Bible Knowledge Commentary).
He gave Paul the contentment he needed to rise above the problem.
Instead of complaining and living a life of sorrow, Paul knew that this problem was God displaying His power through Paul’s life. And because of that it brought him great joy and contentment.
To be transparent, I have a problem with speech. I struggle with speaking or saying things the right way. I always wanted to teach or be a speaker, but I truly believe God keeps me humble by this. Writing is a way for my heart to be heard and for me not to get in the way of God’s ministry of furthering His Gospel.
You may have pleaded with God to remove something from your life as well and you haven’t seen the relief yet. God is the same God today as He was of Paul’s day. God gives us grace (or contentment) to live through any trial or physical problem. Trust in this promise today that God wants to display His amazing Glory and Power through your weaknesses. He wants to use you for His Glory and bring people to Him by using you. Find joy in knowing through these problems we can be made spiritually strong and encourage those around us! When I am Weak, then I am Strong!!