We think you ought to know, dear brothers and sisters, about the trouble we went through in the province of Asia. We were crushed and overwhelmed beyond our ability to endure, and we thought we would never live through it. In fact, we expected to die. But as a result, we stopped relying on ourselves and learned to rely only on God, who raises the dead. And he did rescue us from mortal danger, and he will rescue us again. We have placed our confidence in him, and he will continue to rescue us.
( 2 Corinthians 1:8-10, NLT)
Paul does not give specific details about what he went through in Asia, although his accounts of all three missionary journeys record many difficult trials to be faced. He stated that they were crushed and overwhelmed beyond their ability to endure.
He also writes that as they felt they were going to die they realized that they could do nothing to help themselves-they simply had to rely on God.
Maybe we don't get to the point of fearing death but we often depend on our own skills and abilities when life seems easy and only turn to God when we feel unable to help ourselves. Haven't you been there? Worn out to the point of exhaustion, running around like a chicken with your head cut off trying to control or fix everything.
We get spoiled with the easy stuff, addicted to solving our own problems and then the hard stuff comes and it hits us that we are not sufficient apart from the Lord.
Some of us keep banging our heads against invisible walls.
But its in realizing our own powerlessness without him and our need for his constant help in our lives, that we come to depend on him more and more.
In my own struggle with letting go of my need to control things (and it's still a struggle sometimes) I am realizing that it is true that nothing is wasted. He allows things to happen as they do for a reason.
Sometimes I have to force myself to be still and ask the question, "Lord, what are you trying to tell me through this adverse situation? The basis of all the answers are that I need Him. I am not enough by myself and neither are you.
God is our source of power, and we receive his help by keeping in touch with him. With this attitude of dependence, problems will drive us to God rather than away from him. Whether you feel like you are at the end of your rope or things are better than they have ever been learn to rely on God daily in all that you do.
You won't make it very long or far without Him.
Do you find yourself getting stuck in relying on yourself instead of God? If not how do you remind yourself to keep an attitude of dependence on Him?
Father, we are nothing without you? Keep us reminded through your Holy Spirit to rely on you in sunshine and rain. We don't want to wait until we are at the end of our rope to call on you. You are always faithful.