Would love to say I feel refreshed, energised and vigorously ready for action but to be honest?
I feel exhausted.
And a bit weak.
These days the weights get lighter, the reps less, but the muscles ache longer!
It’s the same with a lot of things, including Christian service and praying. For all the talk and activity at times we can feel a bit spent and low on power.
Like the clergyman standing in for a colleague in an unfamiliar parish, arriving late, not sure if he’s at the right church or whether he’s there to conduct a wedding or a funeral. Are we here to celebrate life and love or offer condolences and lay something to rest?
It’s got like that with traditional denominations in this part of the world. We still make brave, vaguely happy noises but the days of overflowing services and the Church having a real impact on communities, society and popular culture seem past and gone. It appears the ‘glory’ of former days ‘has departed’, at least for now.
But for Christians, feelings of weakness and vulnerability are not necessarily a bad thing. Not if they prompt us to kneel and earnestly plead for help and power from beyond ourselves and our own rapidly diminishing resources. Jesus said the poor in spirit, the mourning and meek would know God’s blessing in heaven and on earth. (Matthew 5v3,4and5) Recently we celebrated Pentecost and I’m remembering somewhere I read the Holy Spirit comes to ‘help us in our weakness’, especially in offering prayers pleasing to God. (Romans 8v26)
Then there’s this whole section in 2 Corinthians 11v16-12v10 where the Apostle Paul seems to absolutely exult in his weaknesses for right there is where he experiences the greatest help from God.
We might still feel weak but that’s ok. We could beat ourselves up over a whole load of things but our Master doesn’t ask us to, He’s got all that covered.
We could and should give thanks that we are loved deeply and eternally by the Lord and that His grace will always be sufficient for our every need. As we turn over every thought, every concern, every apparent weakness to Him in prayer, that is when we begin to feel His comforting strength.