As I worshiped at this Ash Wednesday service, the phrase, "IN weakness," came to mind from this Scripture...
2 Corinthians 12:9:
NASB: And He has said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is perfected in weakness." Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.
Amplified: But He said to me, My grace (My favor and loving-kindness and mercy) is enough for you [sufficient against any danger and enables you to bear the trouble manfully]; for My strength and power are made perfect (fulfilled and completed) and show themselves most effective in [your] weakness. Therefore, I will all the more gladly glory in my weaknesses and infirmities, that the strength and power of Christ (the Messiah) may rest (yes, may pitch a tent over and dwell) upon me!
Barclay: And he said to me, “My grace is enough for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” So it is with the greatest gladness that I boast in my weaknesses so that the power of Christ may pitch its tent upon me.
ESV: But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
KJV: And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
NET: But he said to me, "My grace is enough for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." So then, I will boast most gladly about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may reside in me.
NIV: But he said to me, "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.
NJB: but he has answered me, 'My grace is enough for you: for power is at full stretch in weakness.' It is, then, about my weaknesses that I am happiest of all to boast.
NLT: Each time he said, "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.
Phillips: but his reply has been, "My grace is enough for you: for where there is weakness, my power is shown the more completely." Therefore, I have cheerfully made up my mind to be proud of my weaknesses, because they mean a deeper experience of the power of Christ.
Wuest: And He has said to me, and His declaration still stands, My grace is enough for you, for power is moment by moment coming to its full energy and complete operation in the sphere of weakness. Therefore, most gladly will I the rather boast in my weaknesses in order that the power of the Christ [like the Shekinah Glory in the Holy of Holies of the Tent of Meeting] may take up its residence in me [working within me and giving me help].
Young's Literal: and He said to me, 'Sufficient for thee is My grace, for My power in infirmity is perfected;' most gladly, therefore, will I rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of the Christ may rest on me.
The Message: and then he told me, "My grace is enough; it’s all you need. My strength comes into its own in your weakness." Once I heard that, I was glad to let it happen. I quit focusing on the handicap and began appreciating the gift. It was a case of Christ’s strength moving in on my weakness.
"My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect IN weakness.”
IN distresses--circumstances forced upon you, reversals of fortune against your will. This could refer to any situation where you feel trapped. You didn’t plan it or think it would be this way. But there you are, and it’s hard.
Whether IN distresses or persecutions, Corrie Ten Boom encourages us...
Look at self and be distressed,
Look at others and be depressed,
Look at Jesus and you’ll be at rest!
My Daddy, Eston Willis, kept in his Bible, a copy of the following poem which describes our Master Weaver's plan which includes weaknesses, insults, distresses, persecutions, difficulties...
between my Lord and me;
I cannot choose the colors.
He worketh steadily.
Oft times He weaveth sorrow
and I in foolish pride,
Forget He sees the upper
and I the under side.
Not till the loom is silent
and the shuttles cease to fly,
Shall God unroll the canvas
and explain the reason why,
The dark threads are as needful
in the Weaver’s skillful hand,
As the threads of gold and silver,
in the pattern He has planned.
All these pieces…Broken and scattered…In mercy gathered…Mended and whole…Empty handed…But not forsaken…I've been set free, I've been set free…Amazing grace how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me, I once was lost but now I'm found, was blind but now I see…Oh I can see You now…Oh I can see the love in Your eyes…Laying Yourself down…Raising up the broken to life…You take our failure, You take our weakness, You set Your treasure in jars of clay…So take this heart, Lord, I'll be your vessel…The world to see Your life in me...