Thursday, March 18, 2010

Strength Made Perfect

I love that Paul had a thorn in his flesh. Not that the misery of others brings me delight. But the Lord's explanation for allowing that thorn infuses hope and strength to my bones. (see 2 Corinthians 12:7-10)

Paul was an instrument through which God performed countless healings. He had experienced an earthquake sent to free him from prison chains. He had been bitten by a venomous snake without the slightest reaction. Over and over and over again, this man knew firsthand the power of his Mighty God.

Yet he was given a thorn, "a messenger of Satan to buffet him lest he be exalted above measure." We are never told the specifics of this thorn--which also blesses me. But three times Paul pleaded with the Lord to remove it. And knowing the Paul the New Testament church, this pleading probably included a season fasting, weeping, and being face down in the dirt. Yet God did not remove it.

Instead the Lord replied, "My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness." And do you know Paul's response? "Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me." What a testimony!

There are those thorns in our flesh that the Lord is willing to remove if we would simply ask and believe. But then there are those thorns that He allows. And the promise to Paul is a promise to us: His grace is sufficient! His strength is made perfect in weakness!

Oh how He delights in the one who puts their trust in Him.

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