Earlier today, I endeavored to create a YouTube video. As I’m looking into the webcam, it clicked into my head that viewers may be looking at the left eye. I could understand; as I didn’t have my glasses on. I had desired to talk about humility and the foolishness of “boasting”.
The video story idea simply vanished from my mind. Don’t you just love it when that happens? If I had shown the video then you’d see a man staring into the webcam. I sensed a need to share my weaknesses. Share my disabilities?
When it comes to Scriptures, it’s easy to share what I think that I know. It’s also fun to share opinions about what’s happening in the news or relate personal experiences. If you’d read my earlier stories then you are aware of my doing so.
Boast in my weakness? Can I take a rain-check, Father?
It’s not something one thinks about. I don’t! What about you? Do you like to admit to being weak? For a person with disability, it definitely not fun and it can be quite painful. This is not the result of pride; rather it’s because of fear and shame. I can attest to this; as it was my experience.
What was I afraid of? I was afraid of being deemed “worthless”. Though I don’t recall feeling shame about my disabilities; I do recall being quite sensitive to the notion of being a burden. As a result, I was afraid of acknowledging my weaknesses.
Yet, my Father says “My strength is made perfect in your weakness.” Here’s what 2 Cor 12:8-10 says:
8 Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave 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 of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10 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 don’t know about Paul; however my disabilities are not messengers of Satan. Rather, I consider them, as gifts from my Father. Yet, God would say the same thing. I can easily hear “My grace is sufficient for you. My strength is made perfect in your disabilities.”
I did not come to the above understanding, overnight. First, I had to wrestle with the truth that God, the Father really loves me. I had to see God wasn’t waiting to toss a lightning bolt at me. I had to learn that my Father isn’t looking to condemn me; rather my Father was looking to save me.
Do you want a Scripture that points to this? I recently came across an interesting Bible translation, The Voice. Here how this translation puts a very familiar verse:
16 For God expressed His love for the world in this way: He gave His only Son so that whoever believes in Him will not face everlasting destruction, but will have everlasting life. 17 Here’s the point. God didn’t send His Son into the world to judge it; instead, He is here to rescue a world headed toward certain destruction.
18 No one who believes in Him has to fear condemnation, yet condemnation is already the reality for everyone who refuses to believe because they reject the name of the only Son of God. [John 3:16-18]
Twenty years ago, I’d have read the above Scripture and not given thought. I was too much into the picture of “God is angry and he’s ready to zap me.” I could not conceive of God, the Father loving me and sent a Savior, Jesus. My Father has done much to heal my heart.
Today, I’ve grown in the knowledge of His love for me. I had come to learn of my Father’s acceptance of who I am and my Father’s willingness to help me. I won’t claim perfection; however I do rejoice in what Jesus has done for me.
I really don’t know how to boast in my weaknesses. Yet, I know that my Father’s strength is made perfect. Though I don’t consider my disabilities a prison, I had to admit that I can’t do everything. This is quite humbling when you’ve been taught to be very self-reliant.
Jesus helped me, with learning that it’s okay. It’s okay that I can’t do everything. There’s more. I had to learn that I can rely on my Father for help in my weaknesses. I can rely on the Holy Spirit to guide me. I can rely on Jesus to strengthen me. For, it is Christ who enables me to do all things. Here’s how Paul puts it:
13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. [Philippians 4:13]
Jesus can do the same thing, for you. If you’d let Him.