Helpless, not Hopeless: II Corinthians 12:9

“‘My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.’ So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.”

II Corinthians 12:9 (NLT)

The events of the last week have been surreal.  Everything seems out of control, and it appears that all the power is in the hands of those who should not have it.

  • George Floyd was helpless as he begged for his life from under the lethal knee of a police officer.
  • People protesting racial injustice feel helpless as their voices are drowned out by opportunists.
  • Business owners are helpless watching rioters destroy and steal their property and livelihoods.

I feel helpless just watching it all unfold from a distance, and I am guessing you do too.  But take heart, my friends, because it turns out that our helplessness is no reason to be hopeless.

“‘My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.’ So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.”

II Corinthians 12:9 (NLT)

When we admit our helplessness, we can accept the sufficiency of God’s grace and power.  If ever there was a time for every believer in Jesus Christ to admit to being helpless, it is now.

People have tried to solve problems through human ingenuity for millennia. But we know that does not work.  If it did, we would not be looking for a new leader every election cycle and finding fault with the ones we chose. Hope built on government, politicians, the justice system, activism, and other such concepts is misplaced.

On the other hand, God Is the ultimate problem solver. If He had not sent His son to die on a cross and be raised from the dead, we would all be in big trouble.  But He did. And while that act of love is of eternal benefit to us, it is also the baseline from which we daily live out our faith.

  • It is incomprehensible to a person who knows God to treat someone differently because of skin color.
  • It is instinctive to rise to the defense of the downtrodden, marginalized, vulnerable, and oppressed.
  • It is inconceivable to think one has the right to steal or destroy another’s property.

What we have been witnessing is not just lawlessness and injustice.  It is hopelessness and Godlessness.  From our limited perspective, the good guys seem outnumbered by the bad guys. We, by the power of the Holy Spirit, can help change that. 

Hope in anything other than Jesus Christ is short-lived.  Hope in Jesus Christ is eternal.  People who live as hopeful inheritors of God’s grace want to extend the same to all humankind.

So, if you believe in and follow Jesus Christ, admit your helplessness, and embrace the hopefulness of God’s perfect power in your weakness.  A voice of hope is desperately needed in this world saturated with political agendas, finger-pointing, rage, and destruction.  Let God use you to bring that hope into the world.

I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.

Romans 15:13 (NLT)

Be blessed,

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