God’s grace that saves and sustains
...even though I have received such wonderful revelations from God. So to keep me from becoming proud, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger from Satan to torment me and keep me from becoming proud. Three different times I begged the Lord to take it away. Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Corinthians 12:7-10
When facing trials in life, God wants us to trust Him. Yet, there are times that we rely more on our strength rather than the strength that comes from God. When we do this, we assume that we can handle our troubles without help from God. We think that there are trials in life that we can manage on our own and there are difficult ones that need God’s attention As the Apostle Paul experienced, it is when he accepts his weakness to handle tough situations in life that he learn how to lean on God. He was persistent and exceptionally strong willed yet he realized that only when he admitted that he was not capable handling any affliction he was facing that led him to depend on God. From the text, he believed that God answered his prayer though it was not his preferred answer. He asked God three times to remove his thorn in the flesh (v. 8) but God’s answer was not to remove the affliction but to provide him His grace. And he made an affirmation that this grace was all he needed so he could have the strength that will help him endure the trial his facing. The affliction made him humble and the only action expected of a child of God was to rely on God’s grace. The grace of God that made it possible for us to be saved is the same grace that will provide us security though afflicted. All the more God is glorified when His children trust His power to sustain them in difficult times. Quit complaining instead trust in God’s strength. God will use the trials you are facing so He can strengthen your resolve to depend on Him. “You know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything” (James 1:3-4 NIV).
Noel De Guzman