Wednesday, February 11, 2009

WEDNESDAY WEEKLY WORD...strength in my weakness

DO WE TRY TO HIDE OUR
WEAKNESSES FROM OTHERS?

None of us like to admit we have weaknesses, but if the truth was told, all of us do. We all have things that cause us to be vulnerable.


~SUPERMAN ... kryptonite (or lack of) caused weakness
~SAMSON ... his hair (or length of it) caused weakness

We tend to only want people to see our strengths, and we hide our weaknesses from those around us. However, if we want people to see the power of God and the strength that comes thru our faith in Him, we must let people see our weaknesses.

  • If we do not show the vulnerable side - how will others identify with us?
  • How can the unbeliever give credit to God for what God has done in our lives if all they see is our strengths?

The Apostle Paul knew about the importance of showing his vulnerability, especially to his enemies. In this life, we all have enemies. Our natural response is to become defensive with our enemies and hide our weak areas so that our enemy cannot attack us. Paul had a different approach when it came to his enemies.

2 CORINTHIANS 6:11 "O Corinthians! We have spoken openly to you, our heart is wide open."

Paul spoke frankly about his weaknesses.

2 CORINTHIANS 11:6 "Even though I am untrained in speech, yet I am not in knowledge. But we have been thoroughly manifested among you in all things."

Paul admitted his weaknesses.

2 CORINTHIANS 12:7-9 "And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure. (8)Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. (9)And He said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness."

Paul spoke openly about the "thorns in his flesh" that caused him great grief.

WHY DO YOU SUPPOSE PAUL SPOKE SO OPENLY ABOUT HIS WEAKNESSES?

Paul was not afraid to admit his weaknesses because he believed that God was using them to His glory. I love what Christ had to say in verse 9 of chapter 12 ..."My power is made perfect in weakness!" Paul's entire message to the Corinthians was for them to depend more on God's grace, His unmerited love and favor; and less on their own strength and moral ability.

In last week's YOUR OPINION MATTERS POLL, I polled the readers the following question, "Which attitude toward weakness prevailed in your home as a child". The top 3 responses were:

  • 1. 35% of those voting said that they were taught that sharing your feelings showed weakness.
  • 2. 21% voted and said that they were taught that "big boys / big girls" do not cry!
  • 3. Another 21% polled, said that they were taught that admitting a weakness would give enemies a chance to exploit it.
Hiding or displacing our weaknesses may not always be the best answer. In fact -for today's Christian, it is alright to have weaknesses. Since we are relying upon God's strength, this just means that we are a work in progress and others can see the power of Christ thru us.

Never should we be pointing others to "follow us" but rather, "Follow Christ". Since there is no man perfect other than Jesus Christ Himself ... showing our weaknesses as well as our strengths can only lead others to Christ, where we ALL find our hope and our strength.

WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR WEAKNESSES? How has God used you in spite of these weaknesses?

"Dear God, thank you that even though I am weak, I can find strength in You. Use me in all that I have, my strengths and my weaknesses to point others to You. amen."

What am I doing to share a God legacy with others? For the next few weeks, on Wednesday Weekly Word, I will be sharing some thoughts on how we can touch others in a spiritual, meaningful way. It is my desire to leave a godly legacy behind. How about you?

YOUR OPINION MATTERS POLL: Please take time to vote in this week's poll..."HOW DO YOU REACT WHEN YOU ARE CALLED ON THE CARPET FOR SOMETHING?" The poll is located on the side bar of this blog. YOUR OPINION REALLY DOES MATTER!!

4 comments:

Beth in NC said...

Hello Precious! Thank you so much for your heart felt words and prayers! I am so thankful to have such sweet Sister's in Christ. Surely my parents felt all of the prayers lifted up for them yesterday.

And as you can tell from my posts -- I am always sharing about my weaknesses. I am so human and such an open book. I think we should all be real with others because the only GOOD in us is from the Lord.

Bless you sweet friend -- and thank you again!

Debra said...

Laurie,

This is such a great post but I have to admit one I have struggled with. I have many weaknesses but will tell you that with the admission of those have suffered.

It is only in the most intimate of settings with those I trust the most that I can share.

I tend to be an encourager and an exhorter by nature and God's design...and when He leads me I am open about the weaknesses but have to tell you, oh how scary!

Loved this post. So great to hear how the apostle Paul encourages us to do just that..be bold in our weakness.

Blessings to you!

Jennifer said...

Amen, Laurie! Great post with a powerful message.

I spent most of my life hidding all of my faults, flaws and weaknesses from the ones that loved me and from the world.

However, after many years of constant attacks from the enemy and blessed victories through Jesus Christ...He led me to open up to a couple of ladies about struggling to find a husband after a nasty divorce and having a small child and learning to be CONTENT WITH YOUR LIFE. I saw what God wanted to do with my painful past and it was to help others. I didn't know how He wanted to use me in this area and it took many years before He opened the door for me to blog about my life's storms and His victories.

I have heard from so many ones over the past year who have said "I thought I was the only one who went through that, felt like that or had that problem". If you aren't transparent with others...they will go through life thinking just what the enemy wants them to think...they are all alone.

Thank you for a great post!

Peggy said...

Blessings Laurie...Good WORD for Wednesday with an excellent teaching! The problem is that I think I generally show all my weaknesses, even my doctor told me I wear it all on my sleeve...as a matter of fact, it's also been a pitfall for me...my vulnerability!
But when I am weak, I know that He is strong and it's that which I use
to testify of His Greatness! When I am able, it is because He enables me. It is His strength that keeps me going! I fear that my weaknesses are not that well hidden, not even fear. I would be thrilled to use & usually end up doing so...sharing my weakness that Our Lord may be glorified and how He lifts me, saves me and gets me through day by day...I rely on Him. The problem is
that people in my past saw as all put together until I fell apart and that's what they recall! I do have a tendency to be defensive and not react as I know I ought!!! (usually with loved ones). LOVE your post & insights! Hope you are recovering from your respiratory stuff! I think you mentioned that you were going but I missed if you went cuz of me being "icky sicky", I guess.
Do we ever catch up again after a setback? Thank you for all the work you put into your blog(s) and blog posts!!! Stupendous job "At the Well", though I don't participate, I could not help but catch the impact...way to go...hostess!!!