(From the Archives) Wearing Weak to Grow Strong

I pray this post from the archives blesses you. I’m taking some time off from creating new content to refocus and spend time with family. God willing, I’ll be back January 2 with new posts and a new look.

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My sister-in-law voiced a word that rubbed me raw a week ago. She had no way of knowing it would affect me the way it did, but like nails running across a chalkboard, the despised verb set my nerves on edge.

The word? Convalesce.

 

Dare I Admit Weakness

Dare I let it pass my lips? She spoke it in all innocence. I cringed and gently informed her I indeed was not doing that!

In the week since our conversation, I’ve pondered deep why I would have that reaction to such a benign word. Con·va·lesce,: To recover health and strength gradually after sickness or weakness. (Merriam-Webster’s 11th Collegiate). It could actually be construed as a positive word, uplifting even—suggesting healing is taking place.

Could it be its offensiveness lies in a deep-seated insecurity I have harbored since childhood? Is it possible my aversion reflects a fear of being vulnerable?

Accepting the word convalesce or convalescence, would be like putting on the cloak of weakness for everyone to see. And in my mind, weakness equals vulnerability, the taking away of my control.

Being Strong in Christ

However, isn’t that the crux of being a Christian, giving up control to follow the plot of the Author of our lives? There can’t be two drivers at the same time. Either we do the steering or He does.

The crux of being a Christian is giving up control to follow the plot of the Author of our lives. There can’t be two drivers at the same time. Either we do the steering or He does. Click To Tweet

Will I give up control? Will I wear the cloak of vulnerability?

But in the dance of daily life, it is so difficult. I am empowered by vigor. In my humanness, I always want to be seen as strong. The one who can face the hard and come out standing, but who does God use the most?

“… God has chosen the world’s weak things to shame the strong” (1 Corinthians 1:27).

And, even the strong must grow weak in their own power to do mighty deeds for the Lord:

“He [Samson] called out to the Lord: ‘Lord GOD, please remember me. Strengthen me, God, just once more. …’ He pushed with all his might, and the temple fell on the leaders and all the people in it. And the dead he killed at his death were more than those he had killed in his life” (Judges 16:28, 30).

Even the strong must grow weak in their own power to do mighty deeds for the Lord Click To Tweet

Long have I held onto my love of strength. However, effectively serving God really comes down to one question. Which do I choose: To be strong in my power or to let God lead me through convalescence so I can grow strong in His?

Effectively serving God really comes down to one question: Which do I choose: to be strong in my power or to let God lead me through convalescence or weakness so I can grow strong in His? Click To Tweet

I want to do mighty for the Lord. I want to let go of the steering wheel and give up more of me to have more of Him.

Hmm,  perhaps I’ll try on that cloak of convalescence again. This time it just may fit!

Thanking God for the hard eucharisteo of convalescence.

“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me” (2 Corinthians 12:9).

Reflections: I would love to hear of a word or words that raise(s) your hackles. Have you figured out why it rubs you wrong? Perhaps, like me, you may need to clothe yourself with the word to loosen its hold on you, to make you fully available to God.

 

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By His grace ≈

Julie

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Find hope in your real-life struggles. We'll chase it together! I am a wife; mom of 4 (including a young adult daughter with special needs); miscarriage mom of 5; author & follower of Jesus Christ. I write, edit, speak and enjoy everything outdoors.

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