Wednesday, November 24, 2010

I Can!

"I Can!".  That's a very short, little sentence.  But it is very powerful.  I can!  I wonder how many people heard something different as they were growing up?  Something like "You can't!".  You may be surprised at the number of people who heard "You can't!" more than they heard "You can!" growing up.  Many people today lack self confidence and self esteem because of those negative words.  However, the good news is that the Book says, "You can!"  (The Book is the Bible or the Scriptures.  I just like to refer to it as The Book because it is the manual for living life.) 

Philippians 4:13 (from The Book) says, "I can do all things through Him (Christ) who strengthens me."  Taken in total context this verse is very interesting.  What does it mean?  Let me first explain what it doesn't mean.  It doesn't mean you and I can do anything we want to through Christ who gives us the strength to do it.  For instance, I think it would actually be quite cool if I could fly!  No, not on an airplane (I love that too).  But I think it would be cool if I could just fly.  But God didn't engineer my body (at least in this life) to fly.  Just because Paul said he could do all things through Christ who strengthens him doesn't mean he could lift a car over his head either!  (Yep I know they didn't have cars back then but I'm just saying.)  To understand Philippians 4:13 in context we must look at some previous verses in the same chapter.  In verse 11 Paul says, "...for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am.Then in verse 12, "I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need.  Paul follows with that famous verse (Philippians 4:13) by saying, "I can do all things through Him who strengthens me."  Paul is saying, "In thick and in thin, Christ gives me the strength to handle it, carry on, and make it through!"  

So often in the hard times we find it easy to say "I can't".  But the truth is...YOU CAN...through Christ.  He didn't come just to take all your problems away.  He also came to be with you in the middle of your struggles, to hold your hand, and perhaps even carry you through your struggles.  The bottom line is...through and in Christ we can face anything!  In Christ we can endure anything!  Through Christ you find the strength to rise above any circumstance even though you are in the midst of them.  We are definitely living in challenging times.  We've all had to make some adjustments and trust God even deeper.  But the bottom line is YOU CAN...even in the circumstances.  You will make it through!  But only as you find your strength in Jesus Christ and in His will for your life.  I'm telling you...YOU CAN!

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