“Lord, I know that You want me to be a better person. I know that You long for me to imitate Jesus in all that I am and in all that I do and say. But Lord, I just can’t. There are too many shortcomings in my life. I’m not good enough, strong enough or spiritual enough. I have weaknesses and problems and sins in my life that are in desperate need of your grace. Lord, please remove the thorns from my life so that I can be the servant of Yours that You want me to be.”
I’m thinking that I am not the only one who has ever felt like this. In fact, some of those feelings must have been on the heart of Paul when three times he pleaded with the Lord to remove his thorn. But God’s answer for Paul is the same one we usually receive when we are in our own anguish. “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness” (2 Cor. 12:9). I can’t do it on my own. I just need to trust in God and in His grace. And even those weaknesses and trials I am enduring can and will be used by God to glorify His name. The nature of God’s power is that it has always been made perfect in weakness.
God chose a murderer with stammering speech to lead Israel from Egyptian slavery. He chose a Pharisee who arrested and voted to kill Christians to write thirteen of our Epistles and to carry His saving message to the Gentiles. And He chose you and me with all of our weaknesses and faults to personalize and to carry His message of life to the spiritually dying in our world. His plan has always been to use us where we are with the opportunities afforded us because of our weaknesses.
As we abide in the Vine, we are infused with strength to bear fruit. As we believe in Jesus, His refreshing Spirit flows in us and from us to bless others. No, we can’t get it done with our strength, but He can get it done with our weakness.
Because He lives,