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
To be completely honest, I was not feeling this particular consecration message. In order for me to get a better understanding, I decided to go and read the message in context and it bugged me even more.
Here is Paul, a great servant of God, going on an on about all the bad things that have happened to him while on his mission.
... I have worked much harder, been in prison more frequently, been flogged more severely, and been exposed to death again and again. 24Five times I received from the Jews forty lashes minus one. 25Three times I was beaten with rods, once, I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea, ~2 Corinthians 11:23-26 (NIV)
He goes on and on for the whole chapter like this, and he is proud of it. It is almost as though he welcomes it. Then in 12:7-8 he says "To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Stan, to torment me. 8Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me."
This does not endear me to the cause. This makes me want to run in the opposite direction except Paul is at peace with it. I am aware that as we get closer to God and closer to where He wants us to be that the world will come against us even more. For what joy and peace God has already given me, I could understand why Paul pushes on. God makes it worthwhile. In reality, if we rest in Him during the rough times in our lives they do not become so rough anymore. They become mild annoyances that through God we overcome and triumph.
In truth, if my life had been great and I did not feel that everything around me was coming apart, I would not have gone to God. I would not have turned to his path and rest in him. Now that I have, my problems do not seem as serious. Evil has no power over us, if we only trust in God. Even in the midst of our trials God makes it okay. Thankfully, Paul's burdens are not my own.
Prayer: Lord, I thank you for letting me know that the greatest effort you expect from me is the exercising of my faith. I also thank you for letting me know that when I am weak your strength is greatest…when I am discouraged, you are there to encourage me, when I have run out of energy, you become my energy…therefore, I thank you for directing me to rest in YOU…In Jesus Name, Amen
Prayer is from Brother Ron Jones at NEW AND LIVING WAY OUTREACH MINISTRIES