2 Corinthians 12:10 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.
On first look, the verse is almost an oxymoron – How can one be weak and strong at the same time?
It has been an amazing journey thus far since I became a Catholic almost two years ago. And it has been exactly one year since I attended the Conversion Experience Retreat #41.
Looking back, I realized that God placed me in weaknesses, so that I can struggle and emerge stronger.
The “strong” is not success. It is not a “strong” that is in comparison to others – that I am strong while you are weak. It is definitely not something that we can boast about.
Instead, this “strong” would not come about, if we have not gone through “weak” first.
To me, being “weak” is like having a wound at the most obvious place on my body, somewhere say in the palm of my hand, so that I can look at it every day, and be reminded that I am a sinner. That I carry wounds, wounds that only God can heal. That the fact that the wounds remain, means I need God’s grace and mercy.
My wounds are my sins. They are a constant reminder that I live only by God’s grace and mercy.
How then can I be strong?
It is precisely because I am living in sin, living with my wounds, that I have to constantly pray and seek God’s forgiveness, grace and mercy. And I am strengthened, bit by bit, by keeping myself within God’s presence. The devil will turn me away from God, the devil will tell me lies that I am not worthy and the devil will tempt me. But my wounds, the constant pain, will force me to focus on what is most important – daily prayers to be in His presence.
I have become stronger, though it is not what I seek.
I have become stronger, though it is not what I boast about.
I have become stronger, though it is not what I dare enjoy.
It is God’s will for me to remain in my wounds, and therefore I long to imitate Saint Paul who dares to say that he “delights in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties”
Because it is when I am weak, that I am fully alive. That I know that it is not by own strength that I can overcome sins, but I must be totally dependent on God.
For what will be the opposite? That I live in luxuries and very soon I will forget that I need God!!
I become strong, not for my sake, but because God wants to build up my faith.
I become strong, so that I can become God’s instrument.
I become strong, but never strong enough to leave my weaknesses behind.
Oh God, oh Heavenly King, oh our Father in Heaven, teach me to embrace weaknesses; let me know that I can never be strong enough for I will always be dependent on Your Grace & Mercy and show me that my struggles can bring honour and glory to Your Kingdom.