A while back I wrote a blog simply called “Strength.” It has some good points to it but I feel it needs some updating.
I think strength of our own is overrated. To be blunt, to be strong is crap, a foolish lie. Maybe I want to say that because this last week I have felt just about anything but strong – at least on my own. The more I’ve prayed about it the more I’ve come to realize that we weren’t necessarily made to be strong as women, or as people. The strength we have as women is radically different from most people would think it would be (more on that later). I am, by no stretch of the imagination, saying that women or that people in general were created to be weak. What I do know is what Paul tells us about God’s power and strength in his second letter to the church in Corinth, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness.” God’s power is perfect all on its own; it doesn’t need our weakness to be perfect. What Paul is telling us is that we see the perfection of God’s strength and power in our own weakness. When I find that I am feeling superbly weak it is then that I find the grace and perfection of God’s infinite strength. I would far rather see God’s strength brought to perfection -and in my own heart no less – than feel the need to be strong all the time. Being strong all the time is tiring, so let Him carry the load.
When we are weak our hearts cry out – whether it is a conscious cry or not – that we don’t know how to do this on our own and we aren’t sure how to carry on. It is the painfully honest cry of our hearts that God hears and He comes to comfort and strengthen His sons and daughters. He comes, as Psalm 91 says, to “rescue you from the fowler’s snare, from the destroying plague, [God] will shelter you with pinions, spread wings that you may take refuge; God’s faithfulness is a protecting shield.” The strength we find in the times we are weak – after a break up, after the death of a loved one, after a blow to our career – comes not from our own hearts but rather from the One who dwells in our hearts.
The more I reflect on it, the more okay I am with weakness. Being strong is for those who claim they don’t need or want God. I want God. What is more, I need
God. I’m not about to boast of my own weaknesses – they are many. But, like Paul, I will boast of them if it means that God’s glory shines through them. So my advice to you (and to myself) is stop trying to be so strong. Be weak so that He may be strong in you. Maybe you can’t be weak in front of everyone, find those people you can be completely honest with and be weak with them, but first and foremost…be weak with Him. No matter how weak you feel, God will love you through it, and He will fill you with His strength. Be weak because weakness is beautiful, it is vulnerable, tender, real and unabashedly honest. Anyone who tells you anything different is lying to you, afraid to be weak themselves, somebody who thinks they don’t need God, or all of the above. Open your heart, even if it is the most painful thing you do, open it so that Love may enter in.
What I’m Listening To:
“After Afterall” by William Fitzsimmons
“Everything’s Not Lost” by Coldplay
“You Still Love Me” by Tyrone Wells
“Somewhere Love Remains” by Lady Antebellum