Week of Encouragement Day 3: Strength in Weakness

Maybe you feel weak today. Drained. Tired of the struggle. If that’s you, I pray this post will encourage you.  

We need God’s power every day, especially when life has overwhelmed us. “Power,” as we understand it, is usually the product of training, of discipline, of position and authority – not of weakness.[1] God’s power, though, is available to us not when we are strongest, but when we’re weakest.  In fact, the Bible is filled with stories of God’s using weakness to accomplish His plan by showing His power.  

Think about these examples:

  1. Moses said he was “’slow and hesitant in speech,’” but God told him He would help him speak and teach him what to say (Exod 4:10-12). 
  2. God systematically reduced Gideon’s army so they would know He alone had delivered them (Judg 7:1-25). 
  3. David had only a sling and rock, but God directed the rock to take down the Philistine giant (1 Sam 17:1-50). 
  4. Jeremiah said he was only a child, yet God promised to go with him (Jer 1:7-8). 
  5. More than once, God reminded his people that the battle was His, not theirs (Exod 14:13-14, 1 Sam 17:47, 2 Chron 20:17).
  6. God allowed a thorn in Paul’s life to keep him from getting arrogant (2 Cor 12:7-10).

For the apostle Paul, the weakness created by the thorn caused him to depend more on God for strength. In his anguish, Paul experienced strength in God’s presence; in his weakness, he found power. He learned so much in that experience that he concluded, “I will most gladly boast all the more about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may reside in me” (2 Cor. 12:9). 

If you’re weak today, that’s a good place to be. Let God, who doesn’t lose, fight the battles for you. Be encouraged! 

[1] Some of this material is taken from Chuck Lawless, Nobodies for Jesus (Franklin, TN: Rainer Publishing, 2013), 76-77. You can find this book here


  • donna dalawampo says:

    Thank you so much Dr Lawless for this wonderful encouragement and reminder today. I am blessed by your posting everyday. Stay Blessed!

  • Robin G Jordan says:

    For some Christians their spiritual life consists of chasing after spiritual highs, new manifestations of what they believe is the Holy Spirit, signs and wonders, and that sort of thing. Their spiritual lives are all hills and mountains and no valleys and gorges. When they are not having these kinds of experiences, they become depressed and disappointed. They feel that God has abandoned them. God’s presence, however, is not tied to our feeling of his presence. God’s presence is with us, his grace—the power of his presence–is with us however we may feel. Jesus has promised to be with us to the end of the age and Jesus does not break his promises. Paul realized that because he was weak did not mean that God was not with him. God’s response to his prayer to be freed from the thorn in his flesh was “My grace is sufficient for you.” God’s grace was all that Paul needed. The strength that God himself supplied was ample for Paul. It is ample for us too. We may not receive a miracle. We may not receive a sudden burst of spiritual energy. But God will sustain us. He will enable us to persevere.

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