Are You Strong?
Exactly how strong are you? I don’t really mean can you lift heavy weights, but more can you move with heavy burdens? Have you ever gone through something difficult and thought during that time you would never make it through but then realized that you did? Sometimes the pains of life seem so great that it is going to take us down and it is then, we need to draw upon an inner strength. For inside of each of us is a well of strength that we can call upon if we’re willing to reach inside and get it.
Wade Martin Hughes, Sr. tells the story of a weak, sickly man, who couldn’t afford to go to the doctor. As times passes his condition seemed to grow worse as his weakness increased. In front of his run-down habitat in the woods stood a huge boulder. One night in a dream, God told him to go out there and push the huge rock all day long, day after day. The man got up early in the morning and with great excitement pushed the rock until lunch, then he rested a while and pushed the rock until supper time. Pushing against the rock gave him a sense of meaning and hope.
The Day after Day Push
Day after day he continued to push. Soon the days rolled into weeks, and the weeks into months yet he faithfully pushed against the rock. After about 8 months of pushing the rock, the weak, sickly man was getting tired of pushing the rock. In his tiredness, he started to doubt his dream.
One day he began measuring from his porch to the rock to see how much he had moved the rock. After weeks of pushing and measuring, he realized he had not moved the boulder. As a matter of fact, the boulder was in the same place as when he started. The man was so disappointed that after 9 months he felt his work had accomplished nothing. He was tired, and his dream seemed dashed upon the rock. The man sat on his porch and cried. He had invested hundreds of hours for nothing. Nothing, it was all nothing!
As the sun was setting, Jesus came and sat down next to the man as he cried. Jesus asked, ”Son, why are you crying?” The man replied, ”Lord, You know how sick and weak I am, and then this dumb dream gave me a false hope and I have pushed with all that was within me for over 9 months, and that old rock is right where it was when I started.”
Jesus was kind and said to him, ”I never told you to move the rock, I told you to push against the rock.” The man replied, ”Yes, Sir, that was the dream.” Jesus told the man to step in front of the mirror and look at himself. The man did as he was told and saw himself. He was amazed at what he saw: a strong muscular man. He remembered that he had not been coughing at night. He started thinking of how well he felt and the strength that he had built by pushing on the rock. Then the man realized that the plan of God was not for the rock, but for the man.
The storms, trials, heartaches, and disappointments are all but part of the process. Instead of measuring our success, we must trust that God will use the process to build us up. He is stretching us. He is growing us. It is only in and through Him that we are strong.
I am Weak, But He is Strong
It isn’t easy to be strong and push onto victory, but we can accomplish it if we follow Christ and draw upon His never-ending well of strength. It can be tiring to live the disciplined life of a Christian. Sometimes this life can be so overwhelming that we want to think of our own survival. But through Him, we can grow in strength to not only move forward but to help others around us who are also weak and struggling. It does seem easier some days to throw in the towel and focus only on ourselves but if we put our eyes on Him we can be strong.
Just like the simple children’s song goes. Jesus loves me, this I know. I am weak, but He is strong. Won’t you reposition yourself and grab hold of the one that can indeed make you strong.
So, take a new grip with your tired hands, and strengthen your weak knees. Hebrews 12:12 (NLT)
When you know that Christ gives you strength, you can focus on the here and now and not the tomorrows. This lends the hope that restoration is possible. Stopping and remembering how much God loves you is the first step in strength training. He will offer help when asked. You must, however, keep your eyes focused on Him to endure the hills of life. Remember that He has endured too, so that you may live. In that, He provides the strength you need to carry on.
Focus Builds Strength
By keeping your eyes on Christ and not yourself or your circumstances you gain the encouragement you need. This, in turn, produces the strength to keep moving forward towards Him. You are weak, but He is indeed strong. So, keep your eyes only on the one that can see you through this life and beyond.
Challenge to reposition yourself and hold onto Christ always but especially times of weakness. Allow your convictions to carry you forward. Find motivation in knowing that He is waiting for you to seek His strength and in turn, you may strengthen others. Surround yourself with the comfort of knowing that He is always ready to help because He loves you!
Love in Christ,
For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.
Philippians 4:13 (NLT)
What Are Your Thoughts?
Are you strong in and through Him? Do you allow the weaknesses of life to overwhelm you? Share your thoughts on how you are strong in Him because He loves you.