but we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. we are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; [2 corinthians 4:7-9]


where does your confidence lie?


as men and women, we have many weaknesses. some of us try to hide them in order to appear strong. some of us cling to them in hope that they will excuse us from living the life we are called to live. some of us are ashamed of our weakness. some of us look for pity in it.


but this verse shows a different way of thinking about weakness. God, through paul, is telling us that our weakness is often the vehicle by which he displays his power. when uneducated men speak truth, God’s power is displayed. when a murderous, stubborn, religious leader is humbled and submits to the gospel of Jesus, God’s power is displayed. when physical ailments rise, but the gospel goes out unhindered, God’s power is displayed.


so to keep me from becoming conceited because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, a thorn was given me in the flesh, a messenger of satan to harass me, to keep me from becoming conceited. three times i pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me. 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 of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. for the sake of Christ, then, i am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when i am weak, then i am strong. [2 corinthians 12:7-10]


and God’s power is unstoppable. his sovereign word will not return to him void, but will always accomplish that for which he sent it. [isaiah 55:11] so as messengers of his gospel, we have nothing to fear! our weakness cannot get in the way of the work he is doing through us. afflicted, perplexed, persecuted, struck down, and any other way we are tested, the treasure of the gospel will not be hindered. we will not be crushed, driven to despair, forsaken, or destroyed, because the power of God in us surpasses our own power in every way! we have only to walk in the good works that God has planned long before the foundation of the world for us to do. [ephesians 2:10]


today, is your confidence in the power of God and in the gospel of Jesus Christ?


for i am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the jew first and also to the greek. [romans 1:16]


~arwen eastman