Kneeling on the first step of the stage this morning with my face just inches from the floor, I couldn’t stop the tears from rolling down my face. But this cry was different. It was different because I think I felt every single tear.
I’m not sure what the tears were representative of, but I know they were meaningful. Maybe they were representative of the fifty men I committed to praying for and influencing to Act Like Men (the theme of this morning’s conference)? Maybe they were in some way representative of each struggle and painful experience our family has endured during this season of our lives?
What I do know is that as the tears rolled and every possibility ran through my head, I couldn’t help but feel a sense of complete weakness. Weakness in the fact that as my marriage experienced a struggle yesterday (since completely resolved), I was called upon to pray for and encourage one marriage that was breaking and another that was soon to happen. How could I lead others when I couldn’t lead myself? I also felt weakness in the fact that lately I have struggled to hold it all together yet I am looked at and respected as a pastor (it’s still so weird to even mention that title). I mean, I’m not on the verge of a melt-down or a freak-out but living in a current season of total unknown is weighing heavy. Again, how can I keep others off the edge when I get close at times?
Then Jesus (yup, one of those moments), spoke to me. Not audibly though that would have been mind-blowing, but in a such a way that as I was on my knees with my face on the ground and tears running down my face, He put His hands around my heart and said:
“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” 2 Cor 12:9
I have heard it so many times before (never from God). I have taught on the verses. I believe it with all of my heart. But this morning was different because Jesus said it. He wanted to impress it on my heart, maybe so this time it wouldn’t be forgotten. And definitely so I could see that it is in my weakness that God can use me greatest.
Yesterday was a tough day but it finished with an amazing, Holy Spirit inspired conversations. My weakness caused me to be completely transparent with the couple I was counseling. The transparency broke down walls that were there and probably unbreakable in my own strength. My weakness drove me to get to that conference this morning when it looked like I wasn’t going. And my weakness brought me to my knees on the bottom step of that stage.
In my own strength, I wouldn’t have given Jesus the opportunity to speak to me when I needed it most. But because of my weakness, His perfect power came through.
And now, I feel stronger than ever!
June 6th, 2013 at 10:52 am
God bless you Ryan! It’s difficult to write about our deficiencies. Yet, when we make ourselves vulnerable before our Lord, He does a great work in our hearts. I had a very similar experience before my staff during my first devotions as an administrator. I completely broke down in tears. Later God spoke to my heart with the same verse. He made it very clear to me that we are nothing without Him. We can not do a thing on our own without acknowledging His presence in our lives, and the willingness to be used by Him. Thank you for sharing bro, and acting like a true man of God.
June 6th, 2013 at 11:18 am
Thank you Cameron. I appreciate the encouragement.