Finding Strength In The Lord
“Finding Strength In The Lord”
Daunting tasks, new challenges, and intimidating obstacles constantly face us from our youth on up. That quality which we need in order to overcome is strength. When you were very young, you had to find the strength to hold up your head without help, lift your body, crawl, stand, walk, run, etc. As your life has progressed, new challenges required an even greater amount of physical strength. Now that you are older, different challenges, requiring a different kind of strength have come your way.
But, where do we find such strength? Sometimes, we can find that God-given, natural strength within ourselves. However, where do we find strength for challenges which our natural strength is not sufficient for? When there are tasks that demand more of us than we can physically handle, what then?
God Is Strong, Man Is Weak
There is a definite distinction in the strength the Lord has, and the strength man has. Throughout the Scriptures, the distinction is observed in various ways. In the Old Testament, oppressed men and women did not have enough strength to deliver themselves. However, when God provided the necessary strength, deliverance was sure. In the New Testament, Christians were in need of strength to overcome obstacles, temptations, trials, persecutions, etc. This, they had to find in the Lord, and not in themselves. It is the man who does not recognize his own feebleness and takes on the daily challenges of life alone who will certainly be defeated by the enemy.
It was the Lord who was able to deliver the oppressed Israelites out of Egyptian bondage. In fact, the Passover feast was to be observed as a reminder that by the strength of the Lord, Israel was delivered from Egypt (Ex. 13:3,14,16). The songs, recorded in Exodus 15, are testimonies of the strength that the Lord exhibited on that occasion. When Israel was oppressed by the Midianites (Judges 6-8), it was by the strength of the Lord that they were delivered. In fact, the Lord delivered his people from the army which was “as numerous as locusts” (Judges 7:12) by 300 unarmed people! The Lord indeed is strong!
Will you be humble enough to admit your own weakness and recognize that you must search for strength from a source greater than yourself? Will you make the plea as David did, “Have mercy on me, O LORD, for I am weak; O LORD, heal me, for my bones are troubled” (Psa. 6:2)? Will you believe the words of Jesus when He says, “Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak” (Matt. 26:41)? Being self-reliant will never be the answer to overcoming the obstacles you face in life. God did not intend for it to be that way. God knows that the “flesh is weak.” The sooner you, and the rest of the world, will recognize this fact, the sooner the needed strength can be provided.
God Is Strong, Man Is Weak; So, We Must Seek His Strength
Thanks be the Lord that we are not alone in dealing with our own weakness! For, we would all be facing certain destruction. Our strength alone is not sufficient to sustain us through this life. Our strength alone will meet its limits, then what? Yet, we have all ready established that there is a source of much greater strength! Could it be that weak, feeble man must seek the strength that comes from his Creator, the Almighty God?
Man must actively seek the strength that God offers to those who will follow after Him. “Seek the LORD and His strength; Seek His face evermore!” (1 Chron. 16:11). When Samson was weak, he cried out, “O Lord GOD, remember me, I pray! Strengthen me, I pray, just this once, O God, that I may with one blow take vengeance on the Philistines for my two eyes!” (Judges 16:28). On another occasion, “Now David was greatly distressed, for the people spoke of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and his daughters. But David strengthened himself in the LORD his God” (1 Sam. 30:6). Of Paul facing hardships, “But the Lord stood with me and strengthened me, so that the message might be preached fully through me, and that all the Gentiles might hear. And I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion” (2 Tim. 4:17). God’s strength is able to amply supply us with what we need to endure through this life, if we seek for it.
How We Find Strength In The Lord
“The way of the LORD is strength for the upright, But destruction will come to the workers of iniquity” (Prov. 10:29). Only the Lord’s people will find strength in Him. His enemies will experience His vengeance and will have no source of strength greater than themselves. Woe to those who reject our Lord!
God’s grace provides us the strength we need to conquer. His grace allows us to overcome sin. His grace urges us to live for Him (Tit. 2:11-14). Therefore, no matter what comes our way, we must fully rely on Him, persevering the difficult times, in hope that the Lord will, one day, give rest to His followers and punish the enemies of the cross (2 Thess. 1:7-9). Consider the example of the apostle Paul facing his “thorn in the flesh.” “And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure. Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. 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” (2 Cor. 12:7-10).
Also, as Paul did, plead with the Lord for deliverance through prayer. Be diligent to make your requests known to Him! “Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you” (1 Pet. 5:6-7).
When We Have Found The Strength Of The Lord
God’s strength allows us to endure in time of trouble. “But the salvation of the righteous is from the LORD; He is their strength in the time of trouble. And the LORD shall help them and deliver them; He shall deliver them from the wicked, And save them, Because they trust in Him” (Psa. 37:39-40). Never leave the Lord when trouble arises; rather, cling tighter to Him!
Those who seek strength from the Lord will have the Almighty God as their Rock, Fortress, Deliverer, Shield, and Stronghold (Psa. 18:2). When we, therefore, trust in the Lord, we “are like Mount Zion, which cannot be moved, but abides forever. As the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the LORD surround His people from this time forth and forever” (Psa. 125:1-2).
When God is our strength, who is left to fear? “The LORD is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear? The LORD is the strength of my life; Of whom shall I be afraid” (Psa. 27:1)? “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell” (Matt. 10:28). If God is providing our strength, we have nothing and no one left to fear!
Seek the Lord God in your weakness and allow Him to be your strength! “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Phil. 4:13). By yourself, you are limited as to what you can overcome. But, with the Lord, you can be victorious over all! Praise the Lord!
- Eric Krieg -
Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.