The desire of my heart is to know God more deeply and to love others more fervently. I have prayed that God would give me a genuine love for those around me. Friend, God will answer that prayer every time because it is His own desire for us.
If I call myself a Christ follower I should be known for my faith in Him and my love for my brother and sister (Ephesians 1:15.) Paul said he had heard these things about the believers in Ephesus. Word had traveled and the news was music to Paul’s ears.
Whatever place we call home – may our faith and love be the talk of the town. When I say that “You are loved,” I mean it.
“He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers.” Psalm 1:3
This verse refers to the man who chooses to find his delight in the Word of God and to meditate on it day and night. Today, I’ve been pondering the word “planted.”
I found it fascinating that the Greek word used there actually means “transplanted.” It’s the idea of no longer being in the place we once were but, instead, being planted in a new place – a fruitful place.
Maybe today found you in a place of worry, anxiety, or fear. Perhaps you have been stuck in a place of anger, grief, or bitterness. It is a barren and dry place to be for sure.
But, when we choose to meditate on Scripture and find our delight in the Lord, something amazing happens. We are uprooted – removed from the parched, lifeless soil – and transplanted into a fertile and fruitful place.
Sometimes, we feel like things are being taken – cut away – removed from our lives. Our surroundings suddenly seem unfamiliar. What if we aren’t being cut down or thrown away, but simply transplanted?
I sat in an empty sanctuary listening to my husband preach on weakness and vulnerability. I couldn’t help but think about the many watching and listening from various homes and I love each and every one of you.
Here are my thoughts from his sermon drawn from 2 Corinthians 12:1-10. Three things that occurred to me, as he spoke, regarding our weaknesses.
Our weaknesses are not secret. The psalmist reminds us in Psalm 103:14 that the Lord knows how we were made and remembers that we are but dust. God is not shaking his head and saying, “I thought you were stronger than that.” He may just send things our way so that we have to acknowledge our weaknesses and desperate need for Him to intervene.
Our weaknesses are not shameful. Paul laid bare every weakness he had and made them known to the recipients of his letter. We all have areas of weakness and we don’t need to be ashamed of them. My favorite verse, and the one which our church’s women’s ministry is built upon, is Romans 15:1.
👉It is the obligation of the strong to bear the failings of the weak.
The word “strong” there just means able or equipped.
The word “bear” means to lift, relieve, assist.
The word “failings” literally means weaknesses.
So, Paul isn’t saying strong and weak like good and bad or winner and loser. He is saying that it is the obligation of those who are able to help those who are, for whatever reason, not able. And we can find ourselves on either side at any point in time.
Our weaknesses are not sinful. Paul said he would boast in his weaknesses because it was those very things that revealed the power of God in his life. Paul prayed for his thorn (or source of weakness) to be removed and the Lord refused.
The result of prayer (vs 8) isn’t always relief, but sometimes a reminder of God’s sovereignty. Not a cure but a contentment. Not a healing but God Himself.