I can still remember the first children’s message I ever delivered in church. The very first question I asked the kids was “Did you know I was the strongest man in the world?” Right after I said that a cute little girl sitting right in the front rolled her eyes and announced loudly “No way!” in the most exasperated tone possible. I think it will come as no shock to you that I’ve never been the biggest, strongest guy on the block. When I was young it bothered me as I was picked last again for football at recess. Now I’ve accepted I’m never going to be the Incredible Hulk (that’s OK – green’s not my best color anyway).
I’ve been thinking about my lack of strength in the context of our theme for this school year “New in Christ” based on 2 Corinthians 5:17. Our special subtheme for November is “New in Christ: Powered with a New Strength!” based on Isaiah 57:10: “You were wearied with the length of your way, but you did not say, “It is hopeless”; you found new life for your strength, and so you were not faint.” As adults when we think about “strength” the focus is often not on physical muscle mass. Instead we lament our lack of energy and mental or emotional strength for what lies ahead. We feel like we just can’t go on or we’re at the end of our rope – our kids, our job, our spouse, and everything else – it’s just too much and we’re not strong enough to deal with it. Well guess what – God recognizes our human weakness and uses it as a strength. Just listen to the words of the apostle Paul: “For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:10. You thought your earthly weaknesses were a sign of failure or an inability to measure up? Think again! God is our strength and our human weakness is merely an opportunity for all the glory and honor and praise to go to Him. Rejoice that you will never be weak with Jesus as your Savior!