Friday, January 31, 2014

Boast in this. . .and you will find power!

I was reading Luke 18:9-14. A parable Jesus told to some who were confident in their own righteousness and looked down on everybody else: The parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector. Both men went to the temple to pray and the Pharisee stood up and prayed, "God I thank you that I am not like the other men- robbers, evildoers, adulterers- or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get." The tax collector stood at a distance and would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, 'God have mercy on me, a sinner.' Jesus said, "I tell you this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled and he who humbles himself will be exalted."

The Pharisee was a man girded in works and prideful of his accomplishments ~ He stood upright before the throne of God comparing his strengths to other's sins. He did not humble himself and recognizing his own weaknesses or shortcomings. Nor would he as long as He focused on another's failures. His boasting is in the flesh not in what Jesus has done for him or helped him overcome. 

The tax collector was coming to Jesus with head bowed in his weakness asking for mercy from his Savior. His heart was broken before God as he beat his breast. He saw his sin and did not hide his weakness. The tax collector knew his need for mercy and came humbly before God.  

2 Corinthians 12:9-11 Tells us what we are to boast about....... Our Weaknesses!! That is the answer! It is in our weakness we are made strong and this is what we truly can boast about and give Glory to God. Thanking Him for our weakness, because it is out of our brokenness that God will shine and touch other's lives.

...."My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong." 2  Corinthians 12:9-11

I can hear myself in the Pharisee's prayer at times. I have always prided myself on being a "truth teller" and not a "liar".  As I climbed upon my pedestal. In the past I have found false security in pursuit of perfection. Truth is of course that perfection is not attainable here on earth. Sometimes I still catch myself caught up in the lie, "it is up to you, Terri." Answer is: I will thirst and hunger after righteousness knowing all the while that it is God I am confident in. Praying that He who began a good work in me will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. Philippians 1:6 This is my prayer for me and for you. 

There is freedom in Jesus and power in surrender.

~ "What is impossible with men is possible with God."~ Luke 18:27

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