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June 29, 2007

When I Am Weak, Then I Am Strong



"You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ?I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.' You must do the thing you think you cannot do."

- Eleanor Roosevelt in You Learn by Living

No doubt hardships strengthen us. In my experience, some of the best leaders are those who have come through great difficulty or tragedy and carry the depth of their experience with them. And for those who follow Christ, difficulties do more than build our own confidence. In fact, sometimes we're at our strongest when we don't feel confident or strong or whole. Sometimes it's not about growing stronger but about knowing we're weak.

In his second letter to the Corinthian church, Paul wrote about his mysterious "thorn in the flesh," which he begged God to remove from his life. Then he wrote this:

"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."

How has God redeemed your difficulties through his grace? How have these experiences made you a stronger leader?

Comments

Sometimes it's not about growing stronger but about knowing we're weak. Great insight, that says it all to me. Thanks!

Someone smart once said that "A leader isn't qualified to lead until he's been broken." Or something close to that. Perhaps one of you could quote it exactly. I agree that the leaders that I respect and admire the most are the ones who have survived tragedy or, perhaps even more, been restored after a personal or moral failure.
God has been so gracious to restore me to ministry service after my own failure. I think I am a more effective leader now than before and I know I am a more grace-ful leader. More patient, more forgiving, and much more in tune with what's going on "below the water line" in myself and those I lead.
I would never wish pain or tragedy on anyone - but I genuinely thank God for breaking me and showing me my weakness so that I might lead others in His strength and not mine.

I think that some of my experiences have made me more compassionate than I would ever have been before had I not been broken by God. Being humbled, per se, has made me a better leader. As you said, it is only by my becoming weak and getting out of God's way that He can receive all of the glory.

I am choosing to view what I do here on this planet as an investment in my preparation for eternity. Any heavy spiritual lifting I do here, in this body, is training for my eternal body. Further, the training and discipline I exert in this body will enhance my pleasure and joy in eternity. I want to face the Lord with celebration as I am judged for my life's stewardship--stewardship of my talents, my emotions, my body, my money, and my time. I want to minimize my own sorrow and disappointment at the Judgment Seat of Christ, which will be caused by my disobedience and selfish acts revealed.

God never wasted an experience that we've been through. Every experience whether good or bad, how painful it may be, God knows and he is preparing us, for leadership.

I think that the leaders who are most successful in thier ministries are the ones who have learned to humble themselves and have a love for the people that allows them to have a kind of Godly love and then can express this love in his ministry with compassion and without judging people which is a very good trait. Having been through many trials and tests is icing on the cake .I think and it on enhances your ministry. I think you would be less inclined to judge people in thier situations if you have found yourself in situations you never thought you would be in and can share the testimony and the Victory of how God can bring you out. Many of the people who have walked away from ministries experienced spiritual abuse and maniupulation and this kind of think is occuring more often then not. It's common in ministries where the leadership is haughty and proud and treat people less than human and its sad . When you are strong you bear the affirmities of the weak...not adding to thier weaknesses.

It is very ironic that this is the title of todays blog. I am currently going through a moral dilemma involving my ex-husband who has made some poor moral choices. My daughter has found out about it and I am really struggling. I wondered why this would happen to her, why couldn't God protect her. What is the lesson he is trying to teach me, or her father for that matter? I decided to put on my bracelet today that a friend gave me with the verse from 2Corinthians 12:10. She gave it to me when I was going through my divorce. I do believe that when we are weak, then we are strong. We can choose to either try to deal with things ourselves and realize we cannot, or we can give it over to God. He can empower us to forgive even those who we feel are "unforgiveable." When I have felt at my weakest is when I have to let him take over. For only God can change a heart. Through this divorce I have felt completely broken and renewed at the same time. Thank you God for always showing me your grace.

I've been broken: Physically, emotionally, spiritually. I know that in these times, I see that God wants to draw close with me as well as me, wanting to grow close to him. Never trust advice from someone who's not been broken.

I "fought" with God for a while that the testimony I had was not the one I wanted. I wanted the happy large family and the chance to celebrate 50 years plus of marriage with children & grandchildren surrounding us. He has helped me see that He has plans for all that has happened in my life. Being a single mom of one at 19, getting married and then divorced after 14 years of marriage to be a single mother of 6, has given me a heart for women that may not have developed any other way. I am increasingly grateful for God's grace, mercy and guidance as He uses my life in service to others. It is through my failures & weaknesses and His rescues that I can point others to His grace.

This is so relevant for me at the moment, it is so hard when you are broken to make sense of what is going on, or even to see God in the middle of a situation, i've even asked myself am i still saved? but i know its come at a time when i've responded to higher level of leadership so it will not kill me but prepare to minister to others.
thanks once again for ur on time words

I have found, not only as a leader, but as a Mom, that Pauls words have power over the feelings of weakness. I struggle just as any other leader of the church struggles; but, the struggles of a Mom are tougher for me. I remember when my husband and I were going through a time with our oldest daughter and I thank God for sending me to 1 Corinthians 1:9 (NKJV) "God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord." What a sweet reminder of how God's will always prevails. He lifted our family during "Hurricane Kaila" (my own name for this broken time in my life) in only the way He could. Being broken is always a time for renewal in His promises. Lavish those times and praise God for the stronger, better you that arises out of them. God bless you all.

We can do all things, no matter what, through Christ who strenghtens us!!!

Been BLESSED? Been BROKEN? Been GIVEN? (poured out to the max) Yes? Yes? Yes?

Well, the Father wants to put you back together again. He'll make you again, another vessel (Sweeter smelling). You'll be wiser, kinder, stronger,gentler, more caring, more creative, more discerning, more patient, more loving, more beautiful, more thirsty for his presence,and more fit for leading his people.

Yes you will be BLESSED, BROKEN, and GIVEN again and again by the hand of the potter. Why? for future use and service to mandkind.

Remember, we are not our own, we were bought with a price; and there's no making without the breaking!!!


In the last few years I have begun to understand Paul's words more fully, "When I am weak I am strong." Three years ago I was in the midst of a ministry start-up, which included writing, the beginnings of traveling, along with speaking and teaching. Public ministry loomed before me as I began to take long awaited steps of faith. In the midst of the launching of the ministry my brother-inlaw suddenly died. My 5 year old nephew died from a life long illness. My son came close to death in the military and my daughter was going through tests for cancer which turned out to be negative. It was during this stressful time of life that I learned that its ok to slow down when life throws us unexpected curves. It's ok to cry, and its ok as a leader to walk through grief and acknowledge our grief in same way we have taught others to do. It is in my time of grief and the loss of my loved ones that I began to understand that, "When I am weak, then I am strong." I began to learn that my strength no longer comes from myself, but comes from drawing close to God. It is in the fire of personal pain that I learned to believe fully in what I was teaching. I am now willing to live by these words; "Trust God with all of our heart and lean not on our own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him and he will make your path straight.

Please Pray for Street Bullies In The Name Of Jesus Christ
I Pray. Please pray for financial miracle Blessing from Heaven ... for Work & Good pay for each Family Live on Same road I Live on. I pray God will over flow Blessing from Heaven. For each families. The Ones who are not saved In the Blood of Jesus will get save. I Pray For Peace, Love & Joy For each Family on same rode I live on. & please Heal each ones Health. Pray for Each Family Salvation. For each Families In The Name Of Jesus Christ I Pray... Amen... I Do Pray for Anger Kids Will Reach to God Hands For Peace, Love, & Joy That Jesus Christ Can Give to Kids.... I Have Faith God will provide People for Jobs. Heaven is not in no depressing. Pray In The Name Of Jesus Christ.
Seek Kingdom Of Heaven
Matt. 7:7, 8: "Ask, and it shall be given you
God 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 Cor 12.9-10) When I am weak, then I am strong
Commit your way to the Lord, Trust also in Him, And He shall bring it to pass. (Ps 37.5) Trust God & He will do it!

This is such a good reminder to every christian. So through these message we can be deacons of the word of Christ for everyone believer and non-believer.After all, every struggles that we are experiencing and trials that we are facing is nothing compared to the sufferings that Jesus made for us. And just a simple thought shared by our pastor in Lowman Idaho, that the Rose smells more wonderful when you crashed it so good. And I have to believe as well that all of the trials that we are experiencing right now will someday will be rewarded. And all the tears will all be wiped away... I love that thought because I know I am being held on my Father's arms. God Bless Us All.

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