Boasting In My Weakness
If you are like me, then I am sure that you have read the Bible at some point and thought to yourself, “well, this does not make any sense.” Right? You can stop there and let what you have read not make sense to you or you can continue to read it and pray the Holy Spirit enlightens you or gives you understanding.
When I am faced with such a situation, I pray to God and I plead with Him to allow His Spirit, who searches and understands the deep things of God, to teach me; to give me understanding of what I have just read. The Bible teaches us at 1 Corinthians 2:10 that:
“But God has revealed them [His wisdom] to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God.”
I recently read a passage in the Bible and thought, “what at all is God trying to tell me.” When God speaks to you through His Word, His voice is consistent and very clear. The first verse of Scripture that I read was 2 Corinthians 11:30. I understood the letter of the Scripture but not the spirit of it. The next verse I read (without any intention) was Jeremiah 32:17. At that point, I knew the Holy Spirit was trying to tell me something but I was not getting it.
I need to set out the above mentioned verses for the sake of emphasis. The first verse, 2 Corinthians 11:30, states:
“If I must boast, I will boast in the things which concern my infirmity.”
Do you get my difficulty? Why would Paul want to boast about things concerning his infirmity. Infirmity also means weakness or even sickness. Now why would anyone want to boast about their weakness. I mean, you would rather want to hide or shut up about your weakness because you don’t want anyone to know about it. Note that Paul does not intend to boast but if he must boast then he will boast about the very thing that any reasonable person would rather keep hidden or in secret. I did not get it.
As I mentioned earlier, I then read Jeremiah 32:17, which states:
“Ah, Lord God! Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and outstretched arm. There is nothing too hard for You.”
“Alright,” I said to myself, “we know God is great and can do the impossible.” I then began to pray and worship God. I was enjoying the worship and then “it” dropped in my spirit. The wisdom and understanding and the link between the two verses. This is what I got:
Paul was boasting about his infirmity because he knew God had his back. Of all the things he wanted to boast about, he chose to boast about the very thing that every reasonable person will hide away. This is because the God who had his back has great power and is capable of doing the impossible. There is nothing too hard for God.
This is what is so amazing about Paul’s revelation. He will boast in his weakness because then everyone will see the glory of God. What Paul does is what all Christians should aim to do. It shows that all our reliance is on God. He meets us at our weakest point to show that He is God. Because of His great power, we can boast when we are weak; we know He will surely come through for the glory of His Holy Name. I would want all mankind to see the glory of God so I will boast about my infirmity and in my weakness because God’s power is great and He will always come through.
Interestingly, 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 puts Paul’s boasting into perspective. It states:
“And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.“
If God’s grace is sufficient, and His strength is made perfect in weakness, why will you not boast in your weakness? I totally understand Paul now and I think it is amazing. As human beings, we are not engineered to boast about our weakness. It will be hard for us to do that; if not impossible. But then if we think about the glory of God that will be made apparent to all mankind through our weakness then certainly we must be in a position to boast about that.
My God is GREAT! Glory to God!
Written by Kow Essuman, Esq. ACIArb
The author is a barrister; qualified to practise law in England and Wales, New York and Ghana; an Associate of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators in England; a Global Shaper (Accra Hub) of the World Economic Forum and a firm believer in the gospel of Jesus Christ.