Monday, August 22, 2011

Deep Weakness - Deeper Strength (In Other Words)

I remember being in awe of, and deeply humbled by, the story of Andrew Murray's life when I first read it many years ago.

He was a man of great faith, and a tremendous prayer warrior.  I seem to recall that when they prepared his body for burial, it was discovered that he had spent so much of his life on his knees in prayer that he had callouses over an inch thick on his knees.

Today's quote is from this man of faith:

The Christian often tries to forget his weakness:  God wants us to remember it, to feel it deeply. Andrew Murray

I cannot know his intent when he penned these words.  But given the boundless love and grace of God I can only conclude that if God wants us to remember and deeply feel our own weaknesses, it is only so that we will be more closely bound to his grace by our utter dependence upon his strength.

The old hymn says, "I am weak but He is strong. Jesus keep me from all wrong."  Indeed, only He can do so.

Jesus told his followers, "I am the vine and you are the branches.  Without me you can do nothing."

However, his word also tells us in Philippians 4:13, "I can do all things through him who strengthens me."

There is an old story told of a prayer gathering during which the overly pious participants tried to out-do each other in humility.  They called themselves, worthless, vile, wretched wrecks, etc.  Finally one fellow decided he would be the lowliest of them all, proclaiming himself to be nothing more than a "slug for Jesus."

Let us be clear that God does not intend for us to dwell upon our shortcomings and failure out of some morbid sense of duty to do so.  Nor from some pitiful navel-gazing perspective of the school of thought that tells us to remember that we are all just "slugs for Jesus" as the old joke goes.

No, if we are to recall our inadequacies (and they are, indeed, many) it is only so that his adequacy can be all the greater encouragement to us.

He and he alone is able to make us "more than conquerors" and I am thankful.  We can be encouraged that as high as the heavens are above the earth, so much higher is his strength than our weaknesses.

Blessings to you  ...Marsha
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Please join our host today at Sunflower Faith for more on today's In Other Words Tuesdays.


  1. Your post makes me think of the song "More than Conquerers" - I think that's the name; it's probably 20 yrs old or so...Are you a Bible teacher? Just wondering as you seem to have the heart of a teacher.

  2. Sweet Tea, Thank you and yes, I have taught Bible studies for more than 40 years. I think that makes me officially "ancient". :) I once hoped to become a Bible scholar, but instead only achieved becoming a Bible "learner". :)

    Clint - You are welcome - have a very good day. :)

  3. Beautiful words and it was hard not to chuckle a little about the parishioners trying to outdo each other...It reminded me of the ostrich, sticking its head in the sand..and the world that our Father has blessed us with...passing us by...and yet..He has so much to show and see us through!
    Thank you so much for sharing this In Other Words Tuesday! An absolute blessing!

  4. No, if we are to recall our inadequacies (and they are, indeed, many) it is only so that his adequacy can be all the greater encouragement to us.

    Amen! Well said.

  5. I think it's important to remember our mistakes so we don't make them again. But we shouldn't DWELL on them. If we do that, we can't move beyond them and improve.