Read: 2 Corinthians 11: 24-30
If I have to ‘brag’ about myself, I’ll brag about the humiliations that make me like Jesus.
(verse 30, Message Version)
Reflect: After a chapter like we’ve read this week, I have to tell you that my heart can’t decide whether to grieve being broken or celebrate God’s purposes being accomplished in each and every place of brokenness. Therefore, I have to pause and say that I understand some of you may be living in uncertainty right now. It’s possible there is a large portion of you that can’t even imagine living with verve and adventure, because you’re simply trying to survive today. I get it! You’ll find no judgement here, because I’ve lived where you are.
Paul spent the last portion of his life urging believers to truly follow Jesus Christ. Any chance he had, he “bragged” on failures, mistakes, unfortunate circumstances, and humiliations, because that’s where he met Jesus. In less than ideal situations, Paul discovered a life worth living (and dying) for. If he were sitting in front of us today, I believe he’d urge you and me to GO FOR IT! I believe he’d remind us that Jesus died for us to live…. To truly live! And, we get to experience this kind of life in the middle of situations that threaten to kill us. Sometimes, we live the adventurous life right in the middle of circumstances that seem they could kill us.
Respond: You’ll never hear me encourage someone to chase adventure just for the thrill! By nature, I’m nowhere near a thrill-seeker. But, I’ve come face to face with circumstances that I was certain I’d never survive. In those moments, I found Jesus in a way I’d never known, and I found the kind of life that I want the world to know.
Today, could you focus on one negative life experience that brought about positive change? Please pray ahead of time, because I don’t want anyone to fall into a negative pattern of thinking. But, can you look back over life, pinpoint a difficult situation, and remember gratefully the good God brought about in the bad?
Renew: Very simply, today I’d love for all of us to “brag on” the humiliations that have made us more like Jesus. I’m leaving you with very few words from me, because I just want you to communicate with Jesus. Talk with Him about the humiliations and thank Him that He’s used them to make you more like Himself.
I think you know this already, but I’m ok if you don’t see yet how these difficulties have made you more like Jesus and you’d like to spend some time telling Him that. He knows already! If you’re feeling offended, disappointed, or mistreated by the darkness that has taken place in your life, I don’t want you to stuff those emotions during prayer time. I want you to speak honestly with Jesus, BUT confess your desire to see Him use all things for His glory and your good. Express your wish to cooperate with Him in bringing it all together. This is important, girls. Enjoy time with sweet Jesus this morning.
Psalm 27: 13-14; I would have despaired had I not believed I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord. Be strong, take heart, and wait for the Lord.