Whatever you seek to achieve this year, go with the strength you have. Yes, you heard me right. Whatever your goals and aspirations are for your personal life, marriage, family, career, business, studies or ministry, go with the strength you have.
That sounds like a strange advice coming from a Bible-believing pastor, isn’t it? Didn’t Jesus say “Apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:5)? Didn’t the psalmist remind us that God “knows how weak we are, he remembers we are only dust” (Psalm 103:14)? With what strength then am I to face the new year? With what strength can achieve my goals?
Well, as I’ve said, go with the strength you have.
Before you get annoyed with me, let me explain. In Judges 6 in the Bible, we read about how the Israelites were being oppressed by the Midianites. The situation was pretty bleak. The Midianites would destroy the crops of the Israelites, strip the land bare, and leave the Israelites hungry and afraid. One day, a man named Gideon was hiding some grain in his threshing floor when an angel appeared before him and said:
Mighty hero, the Lord is with you! … Go with the strength you have, and rescue Israel from the Midianites. I am sending you! (Judges 6:12, 14).
Gideon was startled by this announcement. He tried to talk his way out of this call by saying that his clan was the weakest in all of Israel and that he was the least in his family. He was living in fear and failure for so long that he could not imagine that he or any other Israelite would be strong enough to rescue Israel from the Midianites. However, here are some truths that Gideon had to embrace:
- My identity is defined by God, not by my past.
- My future is determined by the grace of God, not by my weakness and failure.
- My success is decided by God who calls and sends me.
- My strength is dependent on the presence of God.
These are truths that we must embrace as well as we face the new year. Receive the grace of God. Recognize his presence in your life. Go with the strength you have, mighty hero, for the Lord is with you. He is your strength.
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