Society's message that acknowledging weakness is not a good strategy often resonated with me. Power and control seemed more desirable. In fact, during college a peer gave me this advice, "As you lead, don't ever show your weakness." Unfortunately at times, I took his advice.
There are, however, consequences to denying or being fearful of revealing my weaknesses. Recent social science research shows the impossibility of numbing only one emotion (i.e. fear) without numbing all emotions (i.e. joy, delight). Think of all the joy I deny myself when I fail to reveal my fears and weaknesses. This may explain my stunted emotional life.
Jesus had a unique way of living life from a position of weakness by worldly standards — as a baby in Bethlehem or as an itinerant teacher without credentials. In fact, he often asked for help before giving help. Will you give me a drink? (John 4:7) were Jesus' first words to the woman at the well.
Weakness is a potential place of disappointment, shame and anxiety. But it is also the birthplace of joy, love and gratitude when I see what Jesus does with my weaknesses when I surrender them to Him.
"My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength 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 weakness, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
(2 Corinthians 12:9-10 NIV)
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