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. 2 Corinthians. 12:9
There are certain sicknesses that overwhelm us beyond the physical level. Often, we respond to weakness, pain, and discomfort by diving into sadness, depression, anxiety, and anger.
When we cannot control our bodies, we realize how temporal life is. No matter how much we’ve achieved in life, sickness and death brings everyone into the same playing field. At one point or another, a time comes when our bodies fail us.
Despite this, we can hold on to God’s promise that His grace is sufficient for us. Even when the fever rages, or the tumor grows, or the joints ache… we can still find grace enough to sustain us. And we can praise God for this!
“My [God’s] strength is made perfect in weakness,” says Scripture. Although sickness renders us humans weak, it provides an avenue for a fuller expression of God’s strength to manifest in our lives. Suddenly, we realize that we must depend on Him to make it through the day. Suddenly, we need Him to breathe. Suddenly, we need Him to wipe away painful tears. He becomes our only answer and hope.
There are times when people get miraculous healings; times when they do not. Sometimes, healing comes incrementally; sometimes it comes through a process that involves medicine or radiation or therapy. Sometimes, healing doesn’t come at all. When this happens, how is our faith? Do we throw God in the trash can? Or do we hold on to His heart, knowing that we can trust the God who created the universe and us?
God is not a genie who does whatever we want. Control was never ours to begin with. And yet, we have a God who is still powerful; a God who can make something out of nothing, and a God who says just the same: “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jer. 29:11).
We have a God who can turn ashes into beauty; a God who can weave even the weak things in our lives into something good. In our sickness, He invites us to trust His heart for us. He is still the Author of Life. He still loves us with a deep, deep love.
Because of this, we have reason to smile and say, “Yes, my days belong to the Lord!” His grace is certainly sufficient. We can choose to love Him every day despite ourselves. We can choose to exchange our sadness for His joy (remember, His joy is our strength!). We can choose to speak God’s promises over our circumstances. We can choose faith and trust. Yes, we can choose God in our weaknesses.
Janina Marie Rivera is the Editor-in-Chief of One Voice Magazine, a teacher of world literature, and a student of the Bible. She enjoys reflecting on life’s curve balls and plateaus. She resides in the Philippines, the country known for people who smile a lot.