What do you think of when you hear the word “weakness”? Sometimes when I hear or think about weakness it makes me cringe. I don’t like to think of myself as weak! Who does? Who likes to ponder on their weakness or their failures? Why would we even do that, and is there a benefit in doing so? And yet, the Bible has bizarre answers to these questions. Paul writes that we are to boast about our weaknesses (2 Cor. 11:30) Friends, I’m here to tell you that there is much to gain from our weaknesses. In fact, I would venture to say that if we recognize and allow God to use them, our weaknesses will be transformed into strengths. Let’s look at this a bit closer.
First of all, what makes us weak? Were we born to be weak? Of course not! The world was created into perfection until the Fall of man. The corruption came forth from the adversary, which deformed man into being weak. God did not intend for us to be weak. Weaknesses were a result of the Fall, but God can still turn this curse into a blessing. We can now consider what Paul was writing. What does it mean to “boast” about a weakness? Boasting is a recognition and lifting up of one’s own actions, achievements, abilities, etc.. When someone boasts about themselves or something related to themselves, they usually seek other’s recognition. Perhaps what Paul meant was that we need to seek to have our weaknesses recognized, both by ourselves and others. It’s like coming into a doctor’s office and eagerly exposing all the ailments. If we hide or deny that something is wrong, how can we expect the doctor to help? When weaknesses are exposed, it brings a person to a state of surrender and humility. That first step allows us to acknowlege that we need to depend on something or someone higher than ourselves. Once we expose our weaknesses into a state of vulnerability, that allows God to work. He can use this to establish the relationship that was ordained to begin with. The Lord proclaimed to Paul that, “My power is brought to perfection in weakness,” and Paul states that this is the reason why he’s happy to boast about his weaknesses. It takes a lot of humility, but when we are weak, He is strong. No longer do we protect our flaws, but we open them up before our loving Father. When we can get to that point, what do you think God will do with us? He already says what He will do! He says that through our weakness He is strong. He uses our weaknesses for His glory as He transforms it into something good. The chains fall, and He gives us new strength.
Our weaknesses become our strengths. This is hard to fathom, but this is the reality that God proclaimed to us. And yet, how can this be? Perhaps I can bring an example that can help. Matt Stutzman is a man that holds the world record for the longest and most accurate shot in archery. Out of everyone who has ever shot a bow, he is recorded to have shot farther and more accurately than them all. So where is the weakness in that? Well, Matt has no arms. He literally shoots with his feet and mouth, and he is proud of being the best despite of that. Perhaps, some say, he became the best because of that.
When we recognize the weakness that makes us often uncomfortable and expose them instead of defending them, we will then be amazed at what Abba Father will do. Don’t be afraid. Boast about them and allow yourself to accept change, as our Father’s grace is sufficient enough for us (v. 8 ). So next time when feeling insecure or vulnerable about a weakness, dare to receive the hidden blessing that is rewarded by his faithfulness.
Listen to this beautiful song by Lauren Daigle on what God says about us despite our weakness: You Say