Power in Weakness
Midweek Study with Pastor Edith
August 17, 2023
2 Corinthians 12:7-100
Power in Weakness
Have you ever heard someone say “Don’t confuse meekness with weakness”? I thought about that this week as I was going over some devotional readings and especially our verses for today’s posting. In context, Paul is admitting that he has been given an affliction of some sort. It could be physical, emotional, but is most definitely affecting his spiritual life.
He says he believes that this affliction, this “thorn in his flesh” was a “messenger from Satan to torment me”. Many scholars believe this “thorn in the flesh” was definitely physical, it could be an eye disorder or seizures like epilepsy. I’ve often wondered if the greatest hurt from whatever the “thorn” could be, was the mental distraught it brought on. Perhaps many sleepless nights remembering the persecution he brought on the early believers. Nightmares filled with images of the kinds of tortures those martyrs suffered because of him.
Paul does what we all should do first when we are “attacked” or “afflicted” by something or someone; he goes to his heavenly father: “Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness’”. All I can say in response to this conversation with the Lord is, God, help my unbelief! I am grateful to be part of a praying community, and yet the burden to pray for those chronically ill, people young and old with conditions no doctor seems able to help, is painful for me, but I know that God has a plan and if I submit to him and pray as he taught his disciples to pray, ultimately the healing will come. I pray that my meek attempts to comfort and assure the people entrusted to me will point the way to his amazing grace.
It is good to be bold in asking for greater things than we could ever think or imagine, yet, at the same time, recognize it is God who is in charge, he doesn’t need my advice.