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 of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:9-10 ESV)
I come from a family of achievers. We’re often overachievers and, in some cases, “workaholics”. Perhaps this is ingrained in our genetics, perhaps it’s a combination of drive and ability. Maybe we’re just wired to be “highly alert”, or perhaps it’s just that we’ve been socialized to believe that we were born to continually strive for “more” in life. I suspect, like so many things, it’s a combination of two or more of the above. Whatever the reason, members of my family are unlikely to take comfort in the concept of rest or, worse yet, weakness.
It’s not surprising then, that my idea of belonging to God, of being beloved, quickly turned into a hope for some kind of excellence on my part. Along the way, I’ve tried to offer some kind of perceived perfection to God, and I’ve struggled greatly with the concept of grace & unconditional love. In many of our lives we’ve come to a place, either by choice or mere circumstance, that we were brought desperately low. The place I’m referring to is one where a person feels as though they cannot possibly deserve redemption. I’m confident I’ve personally visited this place more than a few times.
However, God has used these “low points” to open my eyes to my weakness. More than that, He has offered me the painfully beautiful truth that my weakness was an open door to allow His unending grace, power and provision to enter my life (2 Corinthians 12: 9-10). Further still, He taught me that the answer to connection with Him was the opposite of what I had learned; God was not waiting for my exceptional achievement, He was waiting for humility to open the door to my heart.
Beloved, please know that God loves you and is ready to meet you where you are. God is not waiting for you to come out ahead. No, your loving Father is here to meet you, with open arms, and to dress your wounds. You cannot perfect your efforts in the eyes of the Lord; and He doesn’t want or expect that from you.
Take comfort today in the loving strength of the Lord, who is your devoted Father.