Perfect Weakness

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“Power is perfected in weakness.” (2 Corinthians 12:9)

What is perfect power? Boundless energy? Surging potential? Superhuman strength? In the past, these were my expectations.

Yet, in practical reality, His perfect power doesn’t feel a lot different from thoroughly worn-out weakness. Since the spiritual realm is a radically different plane from the natural realm, we should expect spiritual strength to rarely look like physical power. 

God specializes in hiding Himself in the folds of our weakness (Isaiah 45:15; 2 Corinthians 4:7). Our prayers for strength usually comes in the form of an “end-of-the-day-satisfied-exhaustion” rather than a supernatural surge. He is more concerned with our looking like Him than He is with our feeling strong. 

“We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not forsaken, struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus so that the Life of Jesus also may be manifesting in our body.” (2 Corinthians 4:8-10). 

In other words, we keep experiencing trials so that we can keep accessing Him. If He swept away our weakness, then there would be no need for His great power. As Robert Jamieson said, “The Lord has more need of our weakness than of our strength: our strength is often His rival; our weakness, His servant, drawing on His resources and showing forth His glory. Man’s extremity is God’s opportunity; man’s security is Satan’s opportunity. God’s way is not to take His children out of the trial, but to give them strength to bear up against it.” 

When we go to bed tonight, let’s think about our weaknesses differently. Instead of feeling defeated by them, let’s see them as hiding places for the evidence of His Spirit. That is a weakness we can all rejoice in.

“Is sufficient

for you

My grace;

My power

in weakness

is perfected.” – (David Garland)