You are … Strengthened
to make stronger give strength to.
restore, invigorate, establish, support, reinforce, sustain, toughen, intensify, uphold, rejuvenate, fortify
decrease, diminish, destroy, hinder, reduce, undermine, weaken, deny, discourage, dishearten
God promises to strengthen us.
I used to think of myself as a strong person. Until I wasn’t. Until the waves of life knocked me off my feet and left me sinking in weakness. It is in this place of weariness where my eyes opened to my need to receive from God. It is in that place his miracles happen inside of us. The God who promises to never leave us or forsake us, pours out his mighty and gentle power. “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness,” Jesus says (2 Corinthians 12:9).
“When I am weak, then I am strong,” Paul continues in 2 Corinthians 12:10. These weak areas are the thin veil between us and the power of heaven. They give us opportunity to receive. Without them, I think I have it all together and go about my merry way flying solo. It is in our weakness that we learn to abide in our Powerful Father and receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon us (Acts 1:8).
Lord Jesus, help us to not panic in our weary weakness. Open our eyes to see you with us in the middle of the chaos life brings. Calm us and help us to receive your strength and hope and power. Help us to feel that energy in your presence and to have it well up inside our spirit. Thank you that you see us and understand what we need this day. Thank you for loving us in our lack today. Help us open our hearts to receive from you.
“He reached down from on high and took hold of me; he drew me out of deep waters…rescued me because he delighted in me.” (Psalm 18:16, 19)
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The chains that wrapped around me were subtle and seemingly good, until they had me in a depression death grip that would not allow me to breathe.
I grew up a competitive gymnast. I loved it, the determination it took, the joy of soaring through the air, and the satisfaction of a stuck landing. But it also taught me to perform for my worth. I learned exactly what hoops I had to jump through to earn the approval of coaches and judges. Subtly through me teens and young adult life, these lessons followed me long after I had hung up my grips and leotards. I hit my twenties with a laundry list of standards in order to feel good enough in my own eyes. Be the best teacher...
You are…Set Free
Imagine with me the freed Hebrew slaves as they have just witnessed Pharaoh’s army get swept away by the Red Sea closing over them. A woman stands on the edge of the frothing waves watching the power of oppression sinking to the bottom. For four hundred years all her people have known is slavery and oppression. She leaves that all behind, now truly set free from her former life and walking in freedom and adventure with the God who Saves.