Q&A

Strength In Weakness

Q. Re. 2 Corinthians 12:9: I have a question about this verse, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.’  Then Paul says “For when I am weak, then I am strong.” What does “weakness” mean in these verses? I know that Paul wrote them in the context of his persecution and hardships, but what does that mean in a Christian’s everyday life who -thanks to God- doesn’t have to endure persecution? What are our weaknesses in our everyday “ordinary” Christian life? What count as weakness? Could they be our limited abilities which can be mental, emotional and physical? Plus our struggle with our sinful nature and our sins?

A. Here’s what happened.  Paul had asked God to keep his enemies from beating him up all the time. This was his “thorn in the flesh”.  By saying “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness” God meant He wouldn’t prevent the beatings but He would heal Paul every time it happened.  Paul’s weakness was his inability fend off his attackers. The miraculous healing he received each time he was attacked demonstrated God’s strength because only He could do it.  Paul couldn’t even help.

The Lord never promised to keep us from hardship or persecution, but He did promise He would never leave us or forsake us (Matt. 28:20).  He will always be there for us to help us through rough times, and when we’re weak, He will give us the strength to carry on.  Sometimes His strength is the only strength we have.

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