“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.” Ephesians 6:10
God never said to feel strong.
We love to “feel” it. Often we want the security of “feeling” before being or taking action. Father is actually way ahead of us in making provision for the future. He understands the frailty of our humanity. Even Jesus did not feel strong all the time. He actually felt afraid but he did not yield to the leadership of fear.
Father lovingly tells us to be strong but not in our own strength or even the courage we can muster up. He tells us to be strong in the Lord and his mighty power. If it were not readily available at all times, he would not give us that instruction.
My son, Luke, is in the 10th grade and plays high school baseball. When he was young he did really well at baseball but then he got hit by a really hard pitch and it rattled his confidence. He actually took a couple years off of baseball until he got an invitation to play with a summer All-Star team.
He was doing OK in practice with everyone until it came time to bat against a pretty hard throwing pitcher. ￼ As he waited his turn, I could see him getting more and more anxious until he finally ended up behind the dugout in tears begging me to take him home.
It was a difficult moment as a parent because I did not want him to be terrified but I also knew below the surface of a terrified kid, was an outstanding baseball player. I decided that I had to make him go to that plate. ￼I did my best to reassure him that it would be OK and that he could do this although I was about to cry myself and just call it quits. He got enough composure to take batting practice and make it through the day. It wasn’t spectacular in terms of hitting, but it was spectacular in terms of courage.
I just asked Luke, who is now 16 and doing really well on his baseball team, if he remembered that day.￼￼￼ He clearly remembered the day and that it was terrible.￼￼ I agreed that it was not a fun moment but then I asked him what would’ve happened if we just got in the car and drove away that day and left baseball behind?￼￼ We agreed that if we had just called it quits that day he may have never played organized baseball again and would have missed the joy and satisfaction he is experiencing now.
The instruction to “be strong in the Lord, and in HIS mighty power” should bring relief that strength is not dependent on us. It will require faith on our part to access His strength and power that are available but we are still not the source. The great thing about moving forward in faith is that we are stepping into a reality that already exists in Him and when we decide to be strong in the Lord, we will then begin to “feel” it.
So if you feel weak or afraid today, it’s ok. Go ahead and move forward in the unlimited power that Father has for you right now.
Break it down with some coffee and friends. . . .
- Maybe you have never stepped into a batters box with a baseball coming 75+ miles per hour, but have you ever experienced a time when you wanted to back down and quit instead of moving forward because of fear? How did it end? Do you wish you had done anything different?
- Have you ever stepped out in courage before you felt ready or strong and seen something turn out well in the end? What was the motivation that pushed you to move forward?
- Look at Ephesians 6:10 “be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power”.
- How do we be strong in strength that isn’t even our own? What are ways you have already done or experienced it?
- Is there anything in this season of life that you want to do or feel you should do but fear is holding you back? Is it something you believe God wants for you?
- ACTION step: Think of one person you could share that with to pray or just encourage you this year as you take steps in that direction.
Well said. These past weeks as I’ve been agonizingly waiting for promises from God to be fulfilled, the Holy Spirit had me back in the scripture that says:
(we) rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. [Romans 5:2-4]
I hadn’t seen it before but the passage starts with hope – goes through all this crap – and ends back at… hope! My first thought was, “God, what kind of ponzi scheme are You running here? Shouldn’t all that endurance and tribulation end up in peace, prosperity and fulfillment? Are we just going through all the ‘in this world trouble’ you promised just to keep hoping?”
Then He brought me back through the trials of the past few years and how even after moments of despair, I’d built a resistance to difficulty – becoming increasingly more patient and tenacious as I faced the next one. He began to show me that this entire endeavor (ie, life) is a training op to learn how He works and to build that strength you are talking about. An experienced pitcher doesn’t freak out when his curve isn’t working that day, and adjusts to use other speeds and tricks to ‘get through’ the inning until he can figure it out.
I have no clue when this “glorying in tribulations” happens. Frankly I’m initially not all that keen on finding out. But there is a joy and thrill when you master the process of conquering for the exhilaration and victory that comes when you can EASILY conquer challenges.
In video games, there’s even a high that comes from developing a skill at a certain level or proficiency and you welcome the goblins or enemy troops or whatever since there is great enjoyment knowing you can defeat them.
For me it’s also developing that faith that those moments of fear, or uncertainty will remain. And even more knowing that God IS trustworthy and faithful to not leave us in tribulation – or leave us ‘weak’ for whatever the NEXT tribulation part will be.
thanks for your post.
Thank you 🙏🏼
You are right on. I am not yet at the glory in tribulation phase, but I am learning that my well being and security are not defined by my earthly existence but more by my position being seated spiritually with Him Ephesians 2:6. The enemy has been trying to accuse Father that he doesn’t have to hurt or suffer but the fact is He have His son and they both agonized over that sacrifice for us and ….. everyday His children suffer from effects of sin – He isn’t out to eliminate hardship but He is there to overcome it (John 16:33) in and through us just as He did so will we
Praying for your heart and mind to be more secure than ever this year – God bless!
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Such good encouragement to not give up!
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