"All you need is need" -Tim Keller
Weakness. Need. Affliction. What person wants those words to describe them? Nobody wants their lives to be defined by those things. The Bible is so paradox because in it we see that God uses weaknesses, need and affliction as an opportunity to shine His glory in our lives. I think one of the problems is that we have a warped view of weakness in the kingdom of God. We forget that God is drawn to weakness. We forget that in weakness, we are drawn to God. The Body of Christ is trying to be strong in our own strength when God tells us that it is through our weakness that we are strong. Most of us would YES and amen this, but do we truly believe it? Do we believe it when we are weak, afflicted and don't see how God is using the situation for His glory? I know personally, if I can't SEE what He is doing, I quickly lose heart and wallow in self pity. I was just recently faced with this again as we were out of town for three days and I was sick and was stuck in bed. As I laid there, I was asking God "God I truly just want to know how You are using this to glorify You?". I couldn't understand or see how He was using it to glorying Him and that made me lose heart. What I didn't understand is how He was using it to shine through my weaknesses. To draw me close to Him and mold and shape me to look like Jesus. Jesus suffered and Jesus died in what the Bible called weakness. If that sentence doesn't settle well with you (it didn't with me at first) then maybe you don't know how beautiful God sees weakness when it is given to Him. What happens to our weaknesses? They are resurrected by the power of God into new life. Jesus died in weakness and rose and lives in the power of God. We are weak. I am weak. BUT in that weakness we LIVE by the power of God.
I was listening to a podcast by Joni Eareckson Tada and these words of hers seemed to sink right into my heart.
"Christians who suffer are a spectacle of glory like burning bushes not consumed. We are bushes unconsumed. He wants us, to whom He displays His glory.
The best benefit of affliction in our lives is the urgency that we need Jesus. It is the waking up in the morning "JESUS I NEED YOU" life. Blessed are the poor in spirit. This is the biblical way to live."
In the unknown, we draw to the One who is know. When our vision is obstructed, we allow Him to clear the way. When we have no strength, we wait on Him, and He will carry us on eagles wings. We don't look to what is seen, but to what is unseen. And we know, that whatever we see or don't see, He is using it to produce a weight of glory beyond all comparison.
Psa 119:71 It is good for me that I was afflicted, that I might learn your statutes.