Saturday, December 1, 2012

The Paradox of Strength

I am continually awed by how interwoven the moments of my life can be.... and how such seemingly different events bring such a seamless lesson plan for my life.

Apparently, the current general topic is "strength" (ha, ha) ....

 I first began to notice this lesson being woven into the days of my life as I was watching TV.  In one scene, a dying woman was asked, "Where to you find the strength?"  Her reply comes, "We're women, honey. Strength finds us." 

 I smiled. 

That has been my experience, too. Strength has found me - over and over again - most often when I least expected it, and when I was sure I had none of my own.

And yet, in one area, I still hold tightly to every ounce of my own strength.  I stand with fists clenched, knowing full well that, ultimately,  this does not serve me well. 

And ever so gently, I am being reminded...

One of my New Favorite Songs is "I Won't Give Up" by Jason Mraz.  My daughter introduced it to me (I love that!)

It is an "us" song, which is a new genre for me to dare to listen. It's a bit funny (to me anyway) that I'm so taken by it.  There are lots of people in my life, but there is no "us", as it is sung out in this song.  Yet, I listen and I sing.... again and again...

From time to time, different lyrics call out to me.  Driving home, the other day, it was the verse, "God knows I'm tough enough...". 

I laughed.

 Oh yeah, He does.  And He knows how strongly I fight this... this... WEAKNESS.


My "soft side".

Daring to dream and daring to trust.

And, yet, as the song replays I am reminded of His power being perfected in my weakness.  His power.  Love's power.

Unfailing Love and All-Sufficient Grace. The Power to move mountains and harden the hearts of Pharaohs....The Power to change the world ... and soften my heart.

The paradox hits me then.  I am not being "tough" or "strong" defending my heart. I'm being stubborn... and I am walking in fear, in disbelief, and not in His grace, and not in His love.

I've heard it said - again and again lately - "it is in the doing that we are changed".

May I remember the last of that verse: "For when I am weak, then I am strong."  May I walk on faith, let my 'thorn' be a reminder, and experience the sufficiency of His grace.

And in the 'doing' may I be changed.

"God knows I'm tough enough (I am tough, I am loved)"

Oh, and P.S.  I love a good sense of humor....

Album title:  "Love is a four-letter word".... hahahahaha

2 Corinthians 12:9-10

English Standard Version (ESV)

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.