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Great Strength

“If you falter in times of trouble, how small is your strength!” Proverbs 24:10

Ouch! It is precisely in times of trouble that I falter the most. That is when fear, stress, anxiety, and worry all take a front seat. These reactions are not something I ponder and choose – they just show up, like reflex reactions.

When everything is going smoothly in my life, it is much easier to walk with the Lord in that “all-is-well” place. My faith is big, and I feel His conquering power. In assurance and faith, I can also see what might be helpful to others, and hear His voice directing me.

So, why is it that all of that flies out the window when I encounter personal difficulties and challenges?

Trouble and hardship expose who we really are at the core, and it is not attractive. In our overwhelming circumstances, we tend to become even more self-centered than usual. This is when we most readily look for someone else to blame. It is when we treat others horribly, because we are feeling so miserable. It is when the pain or anxiety of the moment becomes bigger than God. In every way, we demonstrate how weak, pitiful, and faithless we are … the opposite of strength. Any façade of strength we conjure up lasts only a short while until the reality of our situation comes crashing down again.

We have just proven this Proverb very true: our strength is very small.

Ironically, this is one of the greatest confessions we could make. It is when we are at the end of ourselves that Jesus has the best opportunity to be the Lord Almighty in our lives – we have no place else to go. The awesome promises of scripture finally have an opportunity to manifest because we are no longer in the way: Psalm 73:26, “My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” 2 Corinthians 12:9, “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”

Now the question is, do we trust God enough to believe His word is true and given for our benefit? Sadly, too often, taking the smallest step toward believing God is more than we can do. All the missteps of our past rise up to accuse us and prevent us from doing so. And THAT is the confirmation this is the right step — in fact, the only step we can take. We actually need God’s strength to even believe Him. In love, He has put us in the hardest and best place: complete dependency. BUT, the choice is still ours. What do we have to lose (besides fear, stress, anxiety, and worry)? When we are weak, He is strong.