Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Where's the Power?

Introduction - Sometimes we are asked “Where’s the power” sort of like “Where’s the beef?” in the old Wendy’s commercials.

Believers in our modern times are looking for lives full of power from the Holy Spirit, but it seems to be elusive. In the Old Testament we saw it in the lives of the heroes of faith when “the Spirit of the Lord came upon them”. In the New Testament we saw it in the lives of the apostles.  Could the problem be in the fact that we’re looking for a Jericho wall to fall down and perhaps not seeing that the Spirit is working in many small and wonderful ways? Not even so small, really. Take the U turn of someone’s life when they come to Christ, for example. Or someone who overcomes or rises above a circumstance such as a broken home, or poor health, or great loss. They are truly living by the Spirit’s power.  And that’s where our story comes in.  I have a husband who has Type I (AKA juvenile, AKA insulin dependent) diabetes. Of my 3 children, two have the disease and one tests positive for the anti-bodies which can cause the disease. I have a high risk of developing the other kind, Type II at some point in the future. Statistics say that having one adult and more than one child in the household with diabetes is like a 1% chance.  And yet here we are. Add to that the fact that both of the others in the household have a high possibility of presenting with the disease and it is not inconceivable that 5 out of 5 of the Thompsons might one day be afflicted.  Unheard of? And yet here we are. While my husband and I have been married for 11 years, statistics say that marriages of people with children with special needs of one kind or another are even more likely to fail than the national average.  And yet here we are.

The Scripture says “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”[ Phil. 4:13]

It is because of Him that I can “get up every morning and breathe in and out” (borrowed from Sleepless in Seattle)
Each day when I check blood sugars, and give shots, and count carbs, and calculate food to insulin ratios (I was never a math genius), for my 2yr old, and my 8yr old, and my husband, it is Christ who strengthens me.

In the face of daily challenges such as lowered immune systems and the long range risks of heart and eye and kidney problems from high blood sugars. Not to mention fear of low blood sugars in children which can result in learning deficiencies. In the face of low blood sugars which have resulted in the trauma of convulsions and catatonia, Scripture says “In all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.” [Rom. 8:37 NIV] And so here we are. How?

The answer is found in another passage, 2 Cor. 4:7, where we are told “But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.” It goes on to say, “We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body.”[NIV] This is the description of just about anyone who has encountered chronic or life-threatening illness. But we claim the promises of God through Paul once again where he says “My God shall supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” [Phil. 4:19 NASB] So we can wake up another day and say “Here we are.”

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