by Pastor Mark Jordan
“And that about wraps it up. God is strong, and he wants you strong.” (Ephesians 6:10, MSG)
Have you ever grown strong and didn’t realize it? I have, and I marvel at it. Once upon a time, I thought that strength was something that could come in a moment…kind of like Popeye eating a can of spinach. What I learned is that strength is developed over time. It comes when you are placed under stress and strain. Yes, it might break you down in the moment, but recovery and healing is what improves strength. Much like going to the gym, it isn’t the actual lifting of the weight that builds strength, but the recovery that follows.
There is no doubt that life can be like a gym. There are times when you must bear burdens that are emotional and spiritual in nature. Those burden can feel like they might overwhelm you, but the rest and recovery that comes from time with God — daily, weekly, regularly, and in-between — is what brings the strength. It is necessary. It is essential. Just as today’s verse states, “God is strong and he wants you strong.” Remember that, and if you feel burdened, stake your life on it.
There is a great Bob Marley quote that states, “You never know how strong you are until being strong is your only choice.” It might not seem like it at the time…especially if you’re hoping that strength comes in an instant like eating a can of spinach…but remember that strength is developed by coming through your struggles, and not just the burdens you bear. Trust the Lord, and lean on Him. He is strong, and wants you strong, too.
Prayer: Dear Lord, I know you are strong. I want to be strong, and I take comfort in the knowledge that you want me strong, too. Forgive me for the times I fear my burdens will break me, and help me to take the time with you for rest and recovery where I will find my strength develop in ways I never previously imagined. I pray this in the strong name of Jesus. Amen.