“For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong” 2 Corinthians 12:8-10
I am not going to enter into theological debate here as to what Paul’s “Thorn in the flesh” actually was. It will suffice to say that it was some form of bodily affliction from which Paul sought deliverance. But I will say this:
The Apostle Paul asked God on the first occasion if He would remove the thorn. Did God Answer? Did God remove it? NO.
The Apostle Paul asked God on the second occasion if He would remove the thorn. Again, did God answer? Did God remove it? NO.
The Apostle Paul asked God on a third occasion if He would remove the thorn. Did God answer? YES. But did God remove it? NO.
Here is a tremendous lesson for every saint. We must NEVER, as some teach, stop praying if we don’t get an answer the first time. I’ve heard it said that if we ask a second time, then our first prayer was not prayed in faith. THAT’S RUBBISH! We are encouraged in scripture, never to give up but to keep on praying. (Luke 18:7)
I believe, in effect, God was saying to Paul, “I am not removing the thorn because I’m doing something better. I am giving you my grace to endure it”
“for my strength is made perfect in weakness”
Although bodily weak, Paul needed to be a spiritual giant to carry out the work that God had given him to do. We all need to be spiritually strong in these last days. This world is a spiritually dark place. As the world gets darker, believers should be shinning brighter!
I believe Jesus Christ is our healer, no doubt about that. But it’s also true that if we never went through the trials of life, including bodily sickness and weakness, we would be spiritually weak and faithless. It’s through the trials, that our faith is stretched to the limit, and by doing so, grows stronger and stronger as we NEED TO TRUST HIM MORE.
His divine strength in us, is at it’s greatest, when we are at our weakest. If we are weak, we stop trusting in ourselves, and trust in Him. We serve Him in HIS STRENGTH not our own.
I am convinced, along with many others, that we are living in the last days before our Lord returns for His Church. Again this week, we suffer another round of date setters. They have a 100% failure rate! We can know the season of His coming but not the day or the hour. But one thing is sure, we are to “Watch and Pray” and be ready! (Luke 21:36)
For the trials of this life, while we wait, we need His strength and grace. Don’t believe those who teach that the Christian can have all their problems removed by faith, and if you still suffer, then it’s because you don’t have enough faith,or worse still, you have a demon. It’s absolute lies and has no basis in scripture.
Seek the Lord amid your trials, know His all sufficient GRACE and His perfect STRENGTH when you are at your weakest! You would never know His perfect strength, if you were never weak. Keep looking up! Our precious Saviour Jesus is returning soon to collect HIS TRUE CHURCH.
“Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong”
2 Corinthians 12:10
Brotherly love…..Pastor Keith
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