The spiritual life rolls along, victory after victory, only to run smack into a wall you didn’t see coming.
A seemingly simple physical exercise revealed an oddity in my hip. Where I could do a more advanced version of a similar exercise, the “lesser” version unveiled significant fatigue after very few reps.
You have prayed and studied and journaled. Over and over this approach has worked. Recently, though, the exercises wear you down. Enduring through greater trials than this leaves you wondering why something seemingly “easier” creates such a feeling of sludging through wet concrete.
I shared the news with my PT, telling him of the situations where the fatigue hit hard and fast. He asked a few questions, then worked through a couple physical tests. I couldn’t tell you what the toe pressure thing or the contortion-style twisting my leg behind me were actually doing.
You go to God. You beg Jesus for clarity and the wisdom promised in James. He throws you a seeming curve ball. The Spirit leads you to walk a slightly different path, to try a different prayer, or just hang out and wait. Unsure of what these things will accomplish, you go through the motions, trusting He knows what He’s doing.
Tests concluded, he smiles and says, “The good news is, you’re just weak.”
The spiritual questions of whether you’re doing something wrong or if some deep, dark thing is revealing are set aside. No longer an issue of “wrong” in your mind, you consider the conclusion of weakness. The Spirit-led different path just works a different set of spiritual muscles.
The PT tests revealed no pinching, no neuro issues, and that the strengthening regimen was not creating other problems. In this case, “you’re just weak” was the best news.
Your pride, much as you hate to admit it, doesn’t like hearing that the diagnosis is spiritual weakness. But you praise Him that in understanding it as weakness, strengthening can occur. And you find yourself praising Him that you are weak.
“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.” –1 Corinthians 12:9-10, NKJV
Image by Marcel Aniceto