Make a muscle in your arm. Come on, let’s see how strong your arm is. OK, now tell me, is your arm ever going to be as strong as your whole body? Ever? Even the kids in my karate class acknowledge that the body is stronger than just the arm by itself. So I try to teach them to punch with their whole body, not just with the strength of their arm.
I am beginning to realize the Christian life is like that. I try to do this life in my own strength, and I realize I have none. In fact, I seem to have nothing but weaknesses and faults. I beg and plead for God to take away my weaknesses and my faults but He doesn’t. He doesn’t take away my problems or my pains either. I can easily descend into despair at this point. But then I read Paul.
2 Corinthians 12:7-10
So to keep me from becoming conceited because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, a thorn was given me in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to harass me, to keep me from becoming conceited. Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me. 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 of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
Even though my karate students, kids and adults alike, acknowledge that the body is stronger than the arm, they continue to punch with just their arms. I remind them over and over and over, and they still punch with just the arm. And even though I acknowledge that God is stronger than I will ever be, I still try to live my life in my own strength rather than His. Fortunately, He reminds me over and over and over of His power, His grace, His love, His Sovereignty, Christ in me, the work of the Holy Spirit.
Oh God, let me learn this lesson; be still and wait on You.
©Rebecca A Givens, 02/14/15