Faith Column: We all have weaknesses
Every one of us has weaknesses. There are physical weaknesses, emotional weaknesses, relational weaknesses, financial weaknesses, and intellectual weaknesses.
There are things your body can’t do. Some of us even have fashion weaknesses! LOL. We have all different kinds of weakness.
The real issue is not, “Do I have weaknesses?” but “What am I going to do with my weaknesses?”
What we normally do is deny them, defend them, excuse them, resent them and most of all — hide them. We don’t want anybody to see our weaknesses!
Then God comes along and says, “You know what I want to do with your weaknesses? I want to use them.” That doesn’t make sense to us; we think God only wants to use our strengths.
The way you think God should work is often the exact opposite of the way He really works in life. He says, “I don’t want to work around your weaknesses. I want to work through your weaknesses!”
God purposely works through weak people. Why? Because it shows His power! God is not impressed with strength, we are!
When we talk about weakness we’re not talking about sins or character flaws that you can change (like overeating, impatience, greed, laziness).
Weakness is any limitation in my life that I inherited or cannot change. There are all kinds of limitations like that.
- Physical defects you were born with
- External circumstances you cannot control
- Unexpected financial setbacks
- Relationship pressures within your family
- Emotional tendencies you are predisposed toward
HOW CAN I USE MY WEAKNESSES?
1. ADMIT MY WEAKNESSES
The starting point is to stop pretending you’ve got it all together. Because you don’t – nobody does! Stop hoping that your weaknesses will go away if you just ignore them. Stop making excuses or blaming others for your weaknesses. You’ve tried all that, and it hasn’t worked.
Sometimes God has to bring something into our lives to get us to admit our weaknesses. That is called a crisis.
A crisis is a weakness identifier. When you go through a crisis it says, “Here’s the fault in my life, the failure, the lack, the weak spot.” Don’t wait for a crisis! It’s far less painful to identify your weaknesses and admit them up front than having to go through crisis after crisis for God to get you to admit, “I’m not God. I don’t have it all together.”
2. BE GRATEFUL FOR MY WEAKNESSES
- It guarantees God’s help.
GOD: 2 Corinthians 12:9a (LB) But I am with you; that is all you need. My power shows up best in weak people.
PAUL: 2 Corinthians 12:10b (LB) For when I am weak, then I am strong – the less I have, the more I depend on him.
- It causes me to value others.
One of the dangers of strength is that it breeds an independent spirit. If I don’t have any weaknesses in my life, I tend to think, “I don’t need anybody!” But God made us to value each other.
One of the biggest lies in our society is that significance is the same thing as prominence. We tend to think if you’re well known then what you have to say is very important. But you can be a celebrity and be living a totally trivial life.
Your nose may be a very prominent feature of your body. But it’s not very significant. You could lose your nose and live the rest of your life. It’s prominent; it’s not significant. On the other hand, there are some organs that are not seen at all, but you can’t live without them.
You make a strong rope, not by making one solid cord, but by putting a lot of strands together. That’s the value of unity, and the value of each other.
- It gives me a ministry.
God put you on earth not just to live for yourself, but to help other people. Your greatest ministry will flow out of your weaknesses. Your greatest life message is going to come out of your deepest hurt. The very thing that caused you the most grief and pain, God can use as a message to other people to encourage them. The thing you’re most embarrassed about, the thing you’re most ashamed of, the thing you don’t want anybody else to know about – God wants to use that to encourage other people.
Pain sensitizes us to the hurts of others. If you want to have a Christ-like ministry, that means sometimes other people are going to be helped, encouraged and even healed by the wounds in your life. Jesus Christ received wounds in His body and we all benefited from it!
When you have walked a mile in someone else’s shoes, you are uniquely equipped to help them through their problems! GOD NEVER WASTES A HURT!
Whenever you go out and share your strength, that always creates competition. But whenever you share your weakness, that creates community. Vulnerability is the key to intimacy and fellowship.
God always uses weak people. He turns weakness into strength.
Tony Bohrer is the pastor of Apostolic Lighthouse in Craig.
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