Finding Grace in His Strength
"My grace is sufficient for you; for my strength is made perfect in your weakness" 2Cor 12:9a
On my walk today, I thought about the lack of sleep I had last night. I had to go to post office to mail something and it only would have taken ten minutes all together--that is if I had sufficient funds with me. I didn't and it meant I had to take another ten minute trip. That's a mile in itself. While I didn't have sufficient funds, God had enough grace for me to make it there without wanting to fall asleep or collapse.
Jesus said to Paul, "My grace (his unmerited favor) is sufficient (enough) for you." Jesus would endow Paul with his favor as he had a thorn in his flesh. What was that thorn? Some would say it was his eye sight. I would like to say God allowed him to have that thorn to keep him from getting big headed from his revelation. But Jesus didn't stop there. He went onto say, "For my strength is made perfect in your weakness." In Paul's case it was eye sight. God would be his eyes. He would give him is strength and that was God's favor to Paul. Paul wrote to the Philippians that he could do all things through Christ which strengthens him.
I believe that is true for us today. We may not feel strong enough to accomplish what he has us to do, but he can give us his strength. He didn't leave us in our weakness. He strengthened us! Paul later wrote in the same letter to the Corinthians that, "when he is weak, that is when he is strong.
I recently heard a sermon about God giving us supernatural ability in our weakness.
The word strength is the Greek word dunamis which means miraculous power. When we lack strength (Lacking power), God empowers us. Power also means ability. When you say I can do all things, you are saying, "I have power to do..." Perhaps this is why Paul boasted in his weakness.
Psalms35:27b "Let the Lord be magnified who has pleasure in the prosperity of his servant," (NKJV)
What is Prosperity? Is it a spiritual implication? Didn't John write that he wished Gaius would prosper as his soul would prosper? If God is a triune being, aren't we? We have a soul and we live in a body and we have a spirit. How does doing well in our spirit only make God happy? We are his children so shouldn't we prosper in our body and soul? Yet there are those, who will say we can advance his kingdom without finances? True, but I would think that if we should also give him our tithe as well as our time and talent. The Hebrew word for prosperity is shalom. In short nothing broken, nothing broken, ( 7966) It means complete. So if you are doing well spiritually great, but do you think he delights in sickness and in poverty? If that was the case, Jesus would not heal and people like Abraham would not have wealth. Before you harp on me and say that's an spiritual implication, remember that the event in the bible are real. The people are real, not fiction. The Bible is not allegory either The word of God is alive and powerful (Hebrews 4:12). I'm not saying that we don't give him pleasure by giving him our time and talents and if we don't have income. I'm saying it takes all three. If all you can is tithe, tithe. If you have no tithe, then give him what you have, but if you can give him all three, do it, but don't hold back. What I am saying is this: How would you feel if you had wealth yet your son or daughter seem to make it to paycheck to paycheck? Does it give you pleasure?
"That's the old testament," you say. It may very well be so, but Paul wrote that ALL scripture is profitable, We shouldn't dismiss it just because its not updated in the new testament or in the letters. "Well, it's for the Jews" Yes, but Jesus had quoted the old testament and so have Paul and if the old testament was only for that time and for teh Jews, it would have not been used after the law.
Poverty and sickness is under the curse and Jesus had redeemed from the curse of the law. And because of the first Adam sinned, we live in a fallen world, but it doesn't mean we l have to accept sickness and poverty from the hand of God. God is not the author of poverty and sickness. That is the lie from hell.
I know that some people like me can't help it. I would love to give God my time by serving in the ministry, but I am churchless, but I do give him of my talents (writing and cover designing) and because I have a job, I can tithe. So I'm not saying, we should have wealth only. My point is God wants completeness in us. He wants us to do well in all areas of our lives. He understands if you can't do all three Everything good comes from God and withholding the tenth that belongs to him is a sin. Did you know the tree in the garden of Eden was God's tenth from Adam? ) I will write about the garden and the tenth in another blog.) Adam sinned because he took what belonged to God.
The people in the days of Jesus, were still under the law because Jesus had not died. Many believed it was because of sin that people were sick or poor. All believers are under grace., not the law, I am under grace, but it was the sin of my father that had impoverish me and I am still trying to break free from poverty.
These are my thoughts and some will disagree and that is fine, but I can't let this go when God burns it on my heart to write.
Author of the Second Chance Series and owner of Unique Pen Press.