Sunday, January 26, 2014

Understanding and Applying the Gospel Power Paradox

My experience of life is this:
Every time I surrender before my Lord,
Power is added so I may be outpoured.
A surrendered life is a life enthused
A surrendered life is one God has used.
As a believer I want my life to stand
As a life that has stood to give others a hand.
The only ‘me’ God uses is the ‘me’ he can trust
A ‘me’ that has cremated my pride: ashes to ashes, dust to dust.
Now let’s talk in terms of God’s ability to overpower
To know how God, mysteriously, then makes my life to empower.
It’s because I’m not ashamed to depend on him so,
And it’s because I’m determined to do everything to grow.
A colossal paradox of truth that I experience almost every day: to be overpowered by God is to be empowered by God. One precedes the other. What is absurd to the unbelieving world is nonetheless true as a blessed experience. I thank God for it.
Many think, “Oh, what a fool for depending on God; for not thinking as you could independently; for being a weak person, needy of God.” But I need God so I need nothing else. Those who might despise my faith may have something they need too – something far less beneficial than God. And perhaps there are several things they need; that they are dependent on.
So, dependence is relative. Nobody can say they are completely independent, as nobody can say they are devoid of worship. We are all in awe of something – or several or many things, perhaps.
The gospel power paradox is so dichotomous that we simply have to melt at God’s command to experience the power poured out over, in and through us in Jesus’ name. This is no power like the world would consider it. It’s a power for peace, for grace, for compassion, for patience, kindness, and many manner of fruit of the Spirit.
The gospel power paradox means that, where we surrender alone to God, we are given power and dominion over God’s creation – we get rule over how we deal with our circumstances, for instance.
To be overpowered by God might seem like an unwanted invasion, but not for the believer. God seeks us to be dependent on him, alone, so he can then pour his power into us, by his Holy Spirit. God will only give us this power if we are first found trustworthy for it through surrender and motivated to do his will.
© 2014 S. J. Wickham.             

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