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Sufficient Grace

Sufficient Grace

APRIL  22,  2020    |    3  MINUTE  READ    |    CHARLOTTE  SNOW

Due to the sensitive area this global worker is serving in, we are using the pseudonym of Charlotte Snow in order to protect her identity.

"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. 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." (2 Corinthians 12: 9–10 NIV)

Weakness is a beautiful thing. Not being able to measure up is a blessing. I know you must be thinking, This is sarcasm, she can't be serious. I am not one who likes to show weakness. I like to be independent, strong, and "have it all together." Last week, I was none of these things.

The owners of my flat are currently building an addition two floors above me, and when I arrived home for my brief lunch break between classes, I found that they had decided to use my walkway and stairs to mix concrete and hoist it up to the flat above me. I could do nothing but stare in disbelief.

It was my last day of the week. I had struggled through 18 hours of language class, had two failed attempts at turning in my visa paperwork, and was not sleeping well. So suddenly needing to become an acrobat to enter my home to avoid being ankle-deep in concrete was not what I had in mind for my lunch break.

When I finally managed to get inside, I couldn't help myself. Hot tears streamed down my face. I was so frustrated with EVERYTHING! I have to cancel my afternoon class, I thought. There's no way I can learn anything else today. My class was in 30 minutes. I picked up my phone to call my teacher, but I hesitated.

The day before, my language teacher, Rissa* had mentioned that she was having a hard time but did not go into detail. She simply stated that she wanted to be "strong." She was holding back tears but changed the subject. As this brief conversation replayed in my mind, I stopped crying, prayed, and picked up the phone. But I didn't call to cancel. Instead, I said, "I am having a hard day. Can we go get coffee and sweets instead of our usual lesson?"

photo of 2 cups of coffee

On our walk to town, I shared how I was struggling, how I had cried right before I called her, and how I felt weak. She looked surprised and stayed quiet a moment.

Oh great, this is back-firing. She thinks I've lost it, I thought.

But then, Rissa* thanked me for suggesting going out, saying she needed to talk and just get out of the house.

So for the next two hours, over coffee and waffles smothered in Nutella (don't judge!), we talked. We switched back and forth between English and my new second language as we were able. She opened up about what was bothering her, about crying and feeling weak, but desperately wanting to be strong.

photo of waffles with chocolate on top

I had asked God the week before to give me the opportunity to have a deeper relationship with Rissa*. We didn't bond because I proved I could do everything right or do it well. We didn't have a great conversation because I met all of my challenges with grace and strength. We had this opportunity for a deeper conversation because I was failing, and by God's grace, I was willing to admit it.

If I had been strong and able to keep it together, perhaps Rissa* would not have felt comfortable sharing some of her struggles with me that day. So, I thank God for my weakness, for not getting it right and not measuring up. His grace is sufficient, and his power is made perfect in my weakness.

*name changed for security


PRAY: Charlotte Snow is serving in a creative access country. Please pray for her as she begins her ministry and transitions into a new culture. Pray that her relationships with Rissa and others around her would continue to deepen. Also, keep other global workers serving in creative access countries in your prayers, asking that God would make their ministries fruitful.

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