The topic of the grace of God is way too much to cover in one blog, but today I really would like to highlight some major ideas we can understand from 2 Corinthians 12:9. 2 Corinthians 12:9 reads, “…My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”
Let’s Get the Context
Honestly, we could break this verse done by itself, but I’d like to talk about it in context. In the beginning f chapter 12, Paul writes to the people of Corinth about humility. He explains to them that he could boast about the visions and revelations the Lord allowed him to experience, because they were just so profound, but he did not want to be exalted. In order to help him remain humble Paul was given a thorn in his flesh. Keep in mind, Paul asked God to remove this thorn THREE times. Every time Paul asked God to remove the thorn God responded with verse 9. HA, how frustrating, but if I’m being honest I needed to see this in it’s entirety to fully understand how His grace is all sufficient and His strength is made perfect in our weakness.
9 And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”2 Corinthians 12:9
At first my focus was solely on verse 9 and I was so excited that in all of my areas of weakness: physical, mental, spiritual…His grace(unmerited favor) was sufficient for me. But, after really reading the verse in context I realize that there are some things in life that we try to pray away, but God allows them to remain simply for humility purposes. Like Paul, we all have that thorn in our side whether it’s a speech impediment, a physical handicap, an insecurity, certain people etc. and no matter how hard we pray or speak in tongues God will NOT remove it, because He knows that the moment He does we will start to forget it’s God working in us that allows us to be victorious. Check out these real live examples of this verse in action:
- Judges 7: In this Old Testament story we find a man named Gideon leading an army of 32,000 Israelites and God tells him you’re going to war with too many men. If you go to war with this many, Israel will believe they won because of the numbers, not because of the power of God. So according to the instructions of God, Gideon removed 31,700 soldiers leaving only 300 men. And God promised victory to the Israelites with just 300 soldiers. Can you imagine going to WAR, like real live war with only 300 people?! But, this is the all sufficient grace of God according to 2 Corinthians 12:9 in real time action. A mere 300 soldiers against the Midianites made the Israelites seem weak, but in their weakness God’s grace was sufficient and His power was made perfect and God gave them the victory!
- Singing: In my real life, I have many weaknesses when it comes to singing. And you may say oh well you can get rid of them by getting a vocal coach and they’ll go away the more you do it blah blah blah, but the reality is I’d much rather be weak in certain areas so that the power of God can operate through me when I’m ministering in song. So that I can never say, “Tiffani, girl you sang that song and the people of God were moved because of you. The atmosphere shifted when you opened your mouth girl!” NEGATIVE!!!! There are many and I mean many times where my hands are literally shaking because I’m about to lead a song. The nerves and things I experience before ministering all come from one desire and that is to please God. To get me through those moments I’ll say ok God you need to take over, because I can’t do this without you. Without fail God shows up and shows OUT! And I’m amazed by that to this day. I know that no amount of vocal coaching or singing in front of people will get rid of this thing, because I can never get too prideful about the gift that I stop giving glory to the gift giver! My singing abilities are limited, but when I put my weaknesses/limitations in God’s hands His power shows up in an amazing way! And for me personally, I feel like Paul, if I must be weak so that the power of God can operate through me, so be it!!!
So, the conclusion of the matter is like Paul, we should be EXCITED about areas in our lives where we know we are limited. Our limitations make room for the power of God to be manifested GREATLY in our lives. Our victory is always in Him and because of Him, never because of ourselves. Never forget, His grace is truly sufficient(all we need) in our weakness, His power works best when we are weak! Let’s thank God for the areas in our lives where we may lack(or be weak), because it’s in those areas where God’s power truly shows up!