Today’s Scripture Selection: Second Corinthians 12:9

“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’”

It is some ways one of the most perplexing scriptures of all, and yet it is one of the most comforting.

Our world defines power as it always had – in terms of strength, influence, money, brutality, ownership, winning – any number of ways that all boil down to one thing – being on top.

But this verse, from God to the apostle Paul, in response to his servant’s struggle with a “messenger from Satan” that “tormented” him, speaks of power in another way entirely.

God’s power is made perfect in weakness.  Whose weakness? That’s made quite clear.

It is our weakness, our admission of need, our dependence on God, which allows God to work in His most powerful ways.

That’s certainly counter-intuitive.

But for thousands of years it has been proven time and again.

So if you aren’t feeling very “powerful” these days, re-visit this wonderful little statement.  You can find how, by admitting to God (and perhaps others) your profound need for God – that you have tremendous endurance, strength, and power after all.

Not because you managed to pull it up from some deep inward reserve but because God works within to accomplish some great purpose through it all.

Prayer: Lord, may I be humble enough to readily admit my powerlessness over some things – and your great power over it all.  AMEN.

By Paul Simrell

The Reverend Paul W. Simrell has served for over thirty years in a variety of congregational and institutional settings. He is a recognized minister with standing in the Virginia region of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada and is nationally endorsed by the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) for specialized ministry in both pastoral counseling and chaplaincy. Ordained in 1982, he has served congregations in Kentucky, Texas, Florida, and Virginia. He currently serves as the pastor of Elpis Christian Church, a small, historic congregation located just a few miles west of Richmond, Virginia. Elpis is the Greek word meaning “expectant hope.” He also serves on the associate clinical staff of the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care, Richmond, Virginia, both as a pastoral counselor and a ministerial assessment specialist, specializing in executive, clergy and relationship coaching. He is a graduate of the University of Florida and Lexington Theological Seminary and has done advanced clinical training in chaplaincy and pastoral counseling at the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington, Kentucky, Children’s Medical Center and Parkland Hospital in Dallas, Texas and the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care in Richmond, Virginia. He is a Certified Pastoral Counselor, an ACPE Practitioner, and a member of the American Association of Christian Counselors. He is a Certified Facilitator of the Prepare-Enrich relationship assessment and skills-building program and served as a volunteer chaplain for over twenty years with the CJW Medical Center campuses in Richmond, Virginia. His avocational interests include playing the piano and drawing. He is very happily married to his wife Elizabeth Yeamans Simrell, a free-lance writer, who is also a Certified Facilitator for the Prepare-Enrich program. Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

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