Grace has been the topic on my heart recently. I have learned a lot about giving grace. God has stretched my heart so much, filling it with more and more grace as He continues to present me with opportunities to give it away.
But what’s been interesting most recently is how much God has been opening my eyes to my desperate need for His grace, as well as how much He truly gives to me.
A recent favorite passage is 2 Corinthians 12. God has brought me back to that chapter countless times in the past few months, especially, gently reminding me to thank Him for exploited weaknesses as they are His opportunity to bring glory to Himself. It’s funny how you begin to see familiar passages of Scripture in a different light as you walk through different seasons of life. I’ve read 2 Corinthians 12:7-10 countless times, but it hasn’t been until recently that God has brought new meaning to those verses.
I love the language Paul uses as he describes his situation. A thorn in the flesh. I have no idea what Paul’s thorn was, but as I look back on the past few years of my life and the various thorns I’ve encountered, I can sympathize with Paul on how painful thorns can be. Paul pleaded with the Lord to remove this thorn. I’ve been there, pleading for relief from a hard semester, a frustrating friendship, or a place of loneliness. Thorns consume our thoughts, our speech, our whole life sometimes it seems.
And then God answered. And He answered in a way that only the perfect Father can. He gently told Paul no, opening his eyes to a much bigger picture. He revealed to Paul the depths of His grace, the sufficiency of His grace, the perfection of His grace.
And Paul rejoiced. He rejoiced because God granted him open eyes to see how this thorn that was exhausting him, pushing him to his limits, was an invitation for God to come in and work.
It’s often when I am at my weakest point, the end of my rope, so to speak, that the veil is removed and I see God in a new way. When I’m broken and empty and I have nothing left to offer, God shows up with a cup overflowing with grace, and He pours it over me.
And so with BIG thorns or little thorns, I’m learning to look past them to the bigger picture of God working, and I’m learning to rejoice. And friends, as I’m learning to rejoice, I’m also learning that there is nothing sweeter than the refreshing shower of God’s grace and power poured over me.