2 Corinthians 12:10
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.

When we are weak, we are strong.  When we are humble, we are exalted.  When we are empty, we are filled.  What is that but a loss of self so that God has room to take over, to put what He has into us that we can’t have on our own.  Jesus’ grace is enough for every thorn.  His strength will supply in every area of weakness.  We are so often limited and lacking, but we are complete and whole in Christ.  He supplies everything we are missing.

At times we need things in our lives to remind us of our need for God.  We need moments of weakness so that His strength can be magnified.  We need lack so that God can supply.  We need things in our lives that we can’t overcome so that we will rely more on God and less on ourselves.  We need hard things to happen in our lives so that we can learn to depend on God.  And all of these things give God the glory and keep us humble in the meantime and keep us seeking Him.

We have to have a mature understanding of what it takes to grow.  Paul had that kind of wisdom.  He recognized that bad things didn’t happen to him just for something bad to happen.  But he found the purpose in each situation to lead Him to greater reliance upon God, greater insight into His character, a recognition of how He provides, and greater understanding of how God can work when we see dead ends.

It’s all a matter of perspective.  Paul’s not talking about reveling in suffering and seeking out bad things in his life.  He is simply able to recognize that those things that we would not choose for ourselves are powerful sources of growth for us and opportunities for God to be exalted.  When those difficulties come and we feel like we’ll buckle under the weight of it all, that’s when God steps in to lift us up.  So let us trust His strength and His grace to supply exactly what we need.

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