Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. 8 Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. 9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.
2 Corinthians 12:7-9
Though one of the more well known, if we’re honest, we’ll admit it’s not one of the more popular verses of scripture. We don’t like to think that God might give us a messenger of Satan. We hate it that our heavenly Father wants us to embrace our weakness. Yet that’s what Paul did, and I believe if we want to grow in Christ, this is what Paul challenges us to do.
What do you boast about the most? For some, it’s a flaw rather than a success. Do you hold a record? Are you known for some character trait or talent. Paul was zealous. He made it a point to defend the Jewish faith, and if that meant destroying other people along the way, then so be it. During his conversion, the apostle was struck blind, and it looks like he never saw properly after that. Were either of these his messenger from Satan? We don’t know. Because it doesn’t matter.
Our weakness doesn’t matter.
Read that again. It doesn’t make a bit of difference what our weakness is–no one needs to hear about it.
We embrace it only because it allows Christ’s power to be made perfect. We live with it because then Christ’s power rests on us.
But guess what happens when we hold on to the weakness and boast about it. What does it do to Jesus’ power within us when we become conceited about our weaknesses or even our strengths? Christ’s power can’t live in the same place as conceit or prideful boasting. When we become like Samson, so confident in our own personality that we forget where our strength comes from, we will, like Samson, lose that power.
So consider your weakness today and let God use it to make Himself strong.