BIBLE READING: 2 CORINTHIANS 12:7-9
Hindrances and hurdles in life are God’s gift to the self-sufficient. While He won’t let you use your weakness as a crutch or a cop-out, He will allow it to keep you dependent on Him. The apostle Paul wrote, “I was given a thorn…to…keep me from becoming proud” (vs. 7). Why would God keep you in touch with your limitations? To embarrass you? No, to empower you so that you can do His will. God’s intention is to increase, not decrease your need for Him. Perhaps this illustration will help you:
Imagine four steel rings: The first ring can support 80 pounds, the second ring 60 pounds, the third 40 pounds, and the fourth ring 20 pounds. Linked together, what’s the greatest weight the chain can support? Two hundred pounds?……..No, a chain is only as strong as its weakest link, so the answer is 20 pounds!
And it’s the same with us; we’re only as strong as our weakest areas. That’s why we sometimes try to excuse or ignore them. But that’s dangerous, because relying on your own strength may win you a few victories and accolades and then cause you to think you can handle everything on your own. It was because the apostle Paul was so brilliant that God permitted difficult circumstances that kept him on his knees, living in a state of forced dependence. After praying repeatedly for God to take his weakness away, Paul finally came to the place where he could say, “I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me” (vs. 9). So today, depend on God!