“’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 Corinthians 12:9-10 (NIV)
One of my crippling weaknesses used to be my low self esteem. Before I truly dedicated my life to following Jesus, I was wounded from a childhood where I was made fun of for my size, height, and my parent’s wealth. It didn’t help that I was home-schooled most of elementary school. When I started going to public school, I had to figure out how to make friends while being made fun of a lot. Also, with how much my family has moved around, I’ve been the new kid a lot and not the kind that people get excited about because of how pretty or cool or rich she was. I was the new kid that was picked on for not having any friends. Although I grew up in the church, I never really knew Jesus so I didn’t have my value set in Him. Instead, I constantly sought out the affection and acceptance of my peers. I made a lot of terrible decisions regarding relationships with guys. I was the fakest person I knew up until my senior year of high school.
While searching for the acceptance of others, I realized that I didn’t like myself. This weakness, plus quite a few other issues in life, caused me to desperately seek Jesus. I had been taught for years that He loves me and that my value is in Him. I decided it was time to finally see if that was true. I praise God that the Holy Spirit convicted me of that. It’s been quite a journey but I find myself getting further and further away from the mindset of low self esteem that I used to have, and getting closer and closer to being fully confident in Christ. There’s still a lot more work for the Holy Spirit to work on with me but I’m excited for it, however difficult it may be.
The greatest part about my transformation is how much glory God has brought to His name because of my weakness. I was able to see how much power He has to save and heal. I also know the healing power that my testimony can bring for others who are hurting. And now I can’t shut up about His love for me! All I want to do is share my stories with people about my relationship with Jesus and how amazing He is! However, like I said, there is still a lot of work to be done in me. There are still convictions I need to learn to stand firm in. There are still times when I need to learn that conforming to others isn’t what is best for me.
So, to conclude, I’d like to challenge some of you to a relationship of honesty with Christ about your weaknesses. Don’t be so full of pride or too embarrassed to expose your weaknesses. Ask God to reveal His strength to you and others through your weaknesses. If it helps, make a list of your weaknesses and surrender your pride, embarrassment, and control with them over to God. My list is long and it has been such a huge blessing to see how faithful God is to continue to show me His grace and strength through all of it. He is so great and deserves so much glory! There needs to be less of us and more of Him. It can be scary or difficult to admit some of these things but have faith and hope that God can bring glory to Himself even through our weaknesses. Remember, “In all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in a creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:37-39 (NIV)