21 February 2018
2 Corinthians 12
Yesterday, We read verses 7 through 9. Today let's continue in the chapter by reading verse 10 and reflecting on a few thoughts. Keep in mind what we took from the previous verses - our weaknesses are gifts, and we know that God gives us everything, including these gifts to be used for His purpose.
Verse 10 > "Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ's sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong."
Notice Paul says he is "well content" - that's more than just content. Are you well content with an insult? I imagine there are time we think we are Christ-like when we bite our tongue and endure an insult - but "well content", that another matter. He goes on to say he is well content "for Christ's sake." Are we able to be well content in distress for the cause of Christ? Can we put living for Christ ahead of suffering the distress? Or do we only see the crisis, or only feel the pain? Are we able to see Him at work in our lives, leading us through, revealing His will and teaching us perseverance, character and hope (Romans 5:3). Paul then ends this teaching session with a bold statement, "for when I am weak, then I am strong." How in the world is that possible? Truth is, it is not possible in the world. It's another divine gift He gives. When I see this passage I also think of James' writing, "Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials. . ." (James 1:2), that one is counter cultural also - and for the same reason. We are strong when we are weak and we can rejoice when we face tribulation because as His children we don't face them alone. He will never dessert us and His rod and His staff, they protect and comfort us and give us the assurance that all things work for our good because we love Him and we are living our lives according to his plan for us.
So when the world attacks the Lord provides. And He provides in His usual way - with abundance and love. We don't see sometimes because we choose to be short sighted. But when we realize the gifts He gives, we can rejoice and enjoy the victory we have through Christ. Look to the life of Paul and see what a life in Christ can be like. Consider all the insults, distress, persecution and difficulties he faced. Then read what he said about these things. How much ink did he use in talking about these? How much ink did he use describing his life in Christ?