Tuesday, April 23, 2013
My Weakness--His Strength
The theme song to my life:
I sat in my chair crying. Again. When would this end? This time I was pouring out my heart to my husband. Not long beforehand, I had been to a session with my Biblical Counselor, a Pastor. At the time, I felt it was very unfruitful, as I thought they had been most of the year. It is only in retrospect that I see how much he was trying to point me to the source of my strength--Jesus. He wasn't using fancy lingo, terminology or diagnoses, but rather recognized my problem was that I needed more of Jesus and His Words washing over my soul. That He was THE author of peace.
John 14:27~Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. (NIV 84)
I was running so hard. Trying so hard. Wanting healing so bad. "Why God? Why couldn't I be healed from the anxiety attacks that had woven their way into my everyday life for the last four years?" I believed He could heal me. I prayed about it. I was prayed for about it. I memorized Philippians 4:6-7. Yet peace remained elusive, or so I thought. I was not only dealing with physical symptoms, but had to take medication as well. And now--it was coming full circle again. I wanted to understand, yet I couldn't...........until.........
My sweet, gentle husband spoke some profound words to me that day. He reminded me that some of my most heartfelt writings came during this time. What IF this was where God wanted me right now? What if I accepted it, not as a part of who I am, but as something I had to go through for now. In my heart, I KNEW that I was better able to encourage others going through so much. Growing up in a charismatic church, THIS was hard for me. I was taught to not accept anything but to rebuke or deny it. However......there was a lot more truth to what he said that day than what I wanted to hear or accept.
After all, I claimed Jeremiah 29:11 as my life verse. Not only claimed it, but felt it spoken into my heart from Him four years ago. I also began to see me in 2 Corinthians 1:4 and claimed it as my life verse. May God help even just ONE person with my story, history, trials and redemption of Christ. And oh, how God had comforted me! I could see that when looking back on my whole life. I am currently in a position to comfort and encourage others and I thank Him for that opportunity and for His strength to do so.
Not long after this conversation, He brought more Scriptures to mind. One that He had impressed upon me four years ago~2 Corinthians 12:9:
If you go onto verse 10, it says: "That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong." (NIV 84)
Delight? From the one taught to deny and rebuke any hardships? Oh, wow. Should I? Could I?
The NIV 84 Life Application Bible says this about this verse:
"God does not intend for us to seek to be weak, passive, or ineffective-life provides enough hindrances and setbacks without us creating them. When those obstacles come, we must depend on God. Only His power will make us effective for Him and will help us do work that has lasting value."
His grace IS sufficient. It was during the first round of this battle--it is just as sufficient now. Except I have a history with Him providing that peace that I crave. I am not just 'memorizing' Philippians 4:6-7, I must now APPLY it. Prayer, supplication, and thanksgiving need to be my 'new normal'.
Things look different--brighter. Hope creeps into my heart. Somehow--what was meant for harm, God would use for good. (see Genesis 50:20) I could rely on His strength.