Verse: 2 Corinthians 12:1-10
I must go on boasting. Though there is nothing to be gained by it, I will go on to visions and revelations of the Lord. I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven—whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows. And I know that this man was caught up into paradise—whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows— and he heard things that cannot be told, which man may not utter. On behalf of this man I will boast, but on my own behalf I will not boast, except of my weaknesses— though if I should wish to boast, I would not be a fool, for I would be speaking the truth; but I refrain from it, so that no one may think more of me than he sees in me or hears from me. So to keep me from becoming conceited because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations,a thorn was given me in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to harass me, to keep me from becoming conceited. Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me. 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 of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 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.
I’m going to focus on the second half of this passage for todays devotion, picking up in verse 5. Paul starts by saying he will boast on behalf of the man mentioned in the prior verses. He’s referring to God allowing him to have an insight on the works that He is doing. Then, Paul says he will not boast, except in his weakness. Paul identifies that he is prone to pridefulness, so God allows him to have a “thorn” or situation that helps him from becoming more prideful and conceited. He ends with one of my favorite verses- “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” He says that he is content with his weaknesses, because they bring God glory.
So, let’s break it down. First, “weakness” in these verses can mean so many things. Paul refers to pride, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. Our weakness can be mental, physical, emotional, spiritual, etc. it can look different person to person, or even moment to moment. We live in a fallen world, so we are broken people who are filled with weakness. I know I’m in a season where I feel weak, on all fronts, all the time. How encouraging is it to know that God knew I would be here, and that He gave us a reminder for how He can use us in our broken state.
Paul talked about his thorn. What’s that thing that keeps seeming to come up, over and over again? It can show up in different ways or in the same way repeatedly. Think of those situations you find yourself in where it feels like God is giving you the same relentless reminders, over and over. The theme throughout my life is situations that keep coming up to remind me that I am not in control of my life, nor should i keep trying to be.
Now, let’s reread that last part and let it sink in “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 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.
You see, we’re not supposed to have it all together. If we were perfect, we wouldn’t have the need for a perfect savior. In reality, God can shine all the more through using me because everyone in my life knows I am a walking train wreck at the moment and the only way good things are happening are through God and God alone. When we’re able to face our weaknesses head on and own them, we’re able to see wheee God has stepped in on our behalf. The people in our lives are able to look at situations and know the only way that it could have happened is through Gods intervention.
Gods grace is sufficient. When I am weak, I am strong. Thank God I don’t need to have it together, because He always has, & always will.
Lord, thank you for being a reliable savior. I can trust you with my weaknesses. I know you will always show up and you a faithful. Please help me to see the reality of my soul today. Show me the situations where I can give you credit Lord. Thank you for being my strong foundation and solid rocks. Thank you for knowing what my heart needed. Let your words resonate in me today and remind me that I am not meant to do it on my own. We love you Lord. Amen
Author: Becca Artymenko