I realized something today. I need to accept my biggest weakness. Accept that the sin that I keep turning to time and time again is something I will continue to struggle with. It’s a cycle really: I repent sincerely and am forgiven, then end up committing the same sin. I tear myself apart. I think this is partially because when I sincerely repent, I have every intention of leaving that struggle behind – cold turkey. The next time I give into that same temptation I feel like a quitter, a failure, or even a traitor.
I need to accept – just as we all do – my struggle. If I was able to resist that temptation on my own then I wouldn’t need God, would I? Accepting my struggle is a step of humility, which means I am now drawing on God’s strength and not my own. This is what the Paul was referring to in the following verses:
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 about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
(2 Corinthians 12:9-10)
Accepting my weakness isn’t the same as making an excuse to sin or trying to clear my conscience – it is accepting the fact that I desperately need God. It is calling on the power that created the universe – that created you and I. I think that is a bit more powerful than anything I could come up with on my own…
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
I may be all over the place, an emotional rollercoaster at times, but Jesus never changes. His love never fades. When I make choices that do nothing but degrade him, it doesn’t tarnish his opinion of me. You see, the enemy wants me to believe one of two things:
- I can resist sin and temptation on my own.
- I have messed up in the same way too many times and am too far gone.
The Bible proves over and over that those are both lies. Jesus didn’t die on the cross to save me from sin I could defeat on my own. He died to save me from the ultimate punishment of sin that I am helpless to overcome on my own.
I’m weak. I struggle. I praise and dishonor him all in the same day. But there is good news – grace. God is strong. He pursues me. He holds me up when I cannot stand on my own. He uses my weakness as an opportunity to display his greatness.
I am going to stop running from my struggle and I am going to embrace it as it comes, knowing that every temptation is an opportunity to lean even further into God. The temptation is often too great for me, but with God – he is much greater than any temptation this world has to offer.
So we say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?
By Emily Meadows