The Power of One?

 I’m only one person. What difference could I ever make?

Besides…I’m not strong enough. I’m not good looking enough. I’m not popular enough. I’m too fat. I’ve made too many mistakes. I’m not a good person. I’m not a good speaker. I don’t know what to say to my friends. I’ve done some really bad things. I don’t fit in.

What difference can I, one severely flawed person, ever hope to make?

I mean I want to serve God, I really do. But do you realize what I have done? Do you know what kind of person I have been? Do you know what people say about me?

I want to be an influence for good at my school, but I am the only one who cares. And they will never listen to one person; especially when that one person is me.

The truth of the matter is, one person does not hold a lot of power. One person standing against a crowd is standing in a position of weakness. One Christian in a school of 1000 students is not in a position of power.

There is not a lot of power in one person.  The title of this blog entry should be called the weakness of one person, because people are weak. We are all weak.

I know a lot of people afraid to become Christians because they don’t think they are strong enough. 

You don’t become a Christian because you are strong; you become a Christian because you are weak. And the secret is, everyone is weak. We all are. And it’s ok that you are still weak.

The first thing Jesus says in the Sermon on the Mount is “blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” I think this would be better said, blessed are those who realize they are poor in spirit, because we are all beggars spiritually.

Spiritually, human beings are beggars. We are destitute. We are the opposite of strong.

Look at Luke chapter beginning in verse 36 

“36 One of the Pharisees asked him to eat with him, and he went into the Pharisee’s house and reclined at the table. 37 And behold, a woman of the city, who was a sinner, when she learned that he was reclining at table in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster flask of ointment, 38 and standing behind him at his feet, weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head and kissed his feet and anointed them with the ointment. 39 Now when the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, “If this man were a prophet, he would have known who and what sort of woman this is who is touching him, for she is a sinner.” 40 And Jesus answering said to him, “Simon, I have something to say to you.” And he answered, “Say it, Teacher.” 41 “A certain moneylender had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42 When they could not pay, he cancelled the debt of both. Now which of them will love him more?” 43 Simon answered, “The one, I suppose, for whom he cancelled the larger debt.” And he said to him, “You have judged rightly.” 44 Then turning toward the woman he said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave me no water for my feet, but she has wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. 45 You gave me no kiss, but from the time I came in she has not ceased to kiss my feet. 46 You did not anoint my head with oil, but she has anointed my feet with ointment. 47 Therefore I tell you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven—for she loved much. But he who is forgiven little, loves little.”

In Simon’s mind he was in a position of power. He was a Pharisee; the best of the best spiritually. Oh sure, he knew he wasn’t perfect, but spiritually he was a powerful guy, definitely more powerful than this woman.  When you lined Simon up next to the woman, boy did she look weak.

Jesus’ point was not that Simon had less to forgive and therefore appreciated his forgiveness less than the woman. Jesus’ point is that because Simon THOUGHT he had less to be forgiven, he appreciated the forgiveness less.

Do you understand what I am saying?

It would not matter if I had a debt today of $100,000 or $1,000,000 because in either case I would be in a position where I could not pay. I would need to beg those around me for help. And whether I was forgiven $100,000 or $1,000,000 I would be extremely grateful of that forgiveness because both debts were amounts I could not have paid.

We need to realize is that it does not matter what sins we have committed, any one of them, unforgiven, will keep us from the presence of God. There is absolutely NOTHING that we can do of ourselves to cover that sin.

We are helpless. We are beggars. We are weak.

There is no power in one person. 

There shouldn’t be any power one person.

It just doesn’t make sense.

Logically, one person is in a position of weakness.

But God knows we are weak. He allows us to be weak. He wants us to realize we are weak.

Look at 2 Cor 12 beginning in verse 7. This is quickly becoming my favorite passage of scripture.

“7 So to keep me from becoming conceited because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations,[a] a thorn was given me in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to harass me, to keep me from becoming conceited. 8 Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me. 9 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. 10 For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

God’s power is made perfect in weakness. 

The power of God can be shown in one weak person.

Abraham was one weak person. He was very old; well past the age that he could biologically become a father. But God needed a man to be the father of many nations; the father of His chosen people.

Think about this; if God is choosing a man to be the father of His chosen people, wouldn’t He want to pick a young man, a strong man with good genes?

But if He did it wouldn’t have been God’s power that was shown, it would have been the power of the young, strong man with good genes. So God chose an old man, a very old man, to be the father of his chosen people. And thru the weakness of one very old man, the power of God was made perfect.

Moses was one weak person. He was a murderer. He was a stutterer. He was an outcast by his own choosing. But God needed a man who God be His voice to the most powerful man in the world, the Egyptian Pharaoh.

God could have chosen a man who was not a murderer, a man who was not a stutterer. God could have chosen a bold man who was an eloquent speaker who was popular among the people.

But if He did that it wouldn’t have been God’s power that was shown, it would have been the power of the bold, eloquent popular speaker. So God chose Moses to lead His people out of Egypt, and thru the weakness of one flawed individual, the power of God was made perfect.

David was one weak person. He was just a boy. He was visiting his brothers on the battlefield. But God needed someone to step up and fight the giant Philistine, Goliath.

God could have provided His people with a warrior capable of defeating Goliath. He could have given them a giant who was bigger than Goliath to kill him.

But if He did it wouldn’t have been God’s power that was shown, it would have been the power of the giant. So God chose the young shepherd boy, David, to fight Goliath. And thru the weakness of one young boy, the power of God was made perfect.

Peter was one weak person. He had his moments of flair; including the time where he boldly told Jesus, “Even if I have to die with you, I will NEVER deny you!” But Peter was weak, and only hours later he found himself weeping bitterly having succumbed to his own weakness and denying Christ as He looked down at Peter from the cross. But God needed someone to deliver the first Gospel sermon on the Day of Pentecost.

God could have chosen a person who followed Jesus perfectly, a person who never stumbled. God could have chosen a person who had never denied Christ in their life.

But this person didn’t and doesn’t exist.

So God chose Peter, the man who denied knowing Jesus as the Son of God was being murdered. And thru the weakness of one human being, the power of God was made perfect on the Day of Pentecost.

God’s power is made perfect in weakness. And we are all weak.

The power of one person, is allowing the power of God to be shown thru our weakness.

I’m only one person. What difference could I ever make?

Besides…I’m not strong enough. I’m not good looking enough. I’m not popular enough. I’m too fat. I’ve made too many mistakes. I’m not a good person. I’m not a good speaker. I don’t know what to say to my friends. I’ve done some really bad things. I don’t fit in.

What difference can I, one severely flawed person, ever hope to make?

I mean I want to serve God, I really do. But do you realize what I have done? Do you know what kind of person I have been? Do you know what people say about me?

I want to be an influence for good at my school, but I am the only one who cares. And they will never listen to one person; especially when that one person is me.

God says, “You are exactly what I am looking for.”

Too many times, our instinct is to try to cover our flaws, and make people think we have no weakness. Pride gets in the way and we become like Simon the Pharisee. When we do this, we are not allowing God’s power to be shown.

“Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.”  – Ephesians 3:20-21

Paul wrote these words to the church at Ephesus. Paul was a man who used to murder Christians, and is now being used by God to show His power. And Paul says God is able to do way more than we could ever think or ask when His power is at work in us!

God can let you do more than you could ever imagine.

“I’m too weak to stand up to my friends.” God says, “You are, but let my power show in your weakness.”

“I don’t know enough to teach someone about Jesus.” God says, “You don’t, but trust my Word to guide you.”

“I’m not bold enough to be the only one at school who doesn’t drink.”  God says, “Let me in, and we’ll do more than you could ever imagine.”

What are we waiting for? It’s time to quit hiding behind our weakness and let God’s power show.

For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

For when I am weak, then I am strong.

For when I am weak, then I am strong!

This phrase has been charging me up spiritually. I hope it can motivate you as well.

And when find yourself in a position of weakness, when Satan is doing his best to tempt you and make you fall, when you are the only Christian at your school, and when you friends are pressuring you, remember – you may be weak, but God is strong and When I am weak, then I am strong!

And that is the power of 1 person. When we allow God to work in the weakness of 1 person.

When I am weak, then I am strong!

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