I’ve been thinking about some of my favorite Old Testament personalities and the situations in which they have found themselves. We tend to sugar coat the circumstances these people were in, or make them into more than what they were—just human beings in seemingly impossible situations.
Take Noah for instance. He lived in a land that had never seen rain—no frame of reference for what rain even was. And yet, there’s our Noah—building a boat, preparing to face the impossibilities he believed were coming (Genesis 6).
I imagine that some days Noah endured pretty intense ridicule. Day after day, month after month, year after year… living in obedience with no sign that what God said He was going to bring would come. I believe Noah must have had more than one day of thinking, “What am I doing this for? Have I lost my mind? Is what God said He would do ever going to come?”
Then the rains fell; floodwaters arose. His faithfulness to God in the face of the impossible saved Noah and his family from total destruction.
David also gets my attention. He was leading a pretty ho-hum life when this shepherd boy was called to face a giant with kid gloves. Many around him tried to discourage him from going out to duel Goliath.
I can hear the snickers behind his back… “I’ve gotta’ see this… He’s toast, man… Nice knowing you David!”
David knew God had his back, even when the battle looked like it was too much (1 Samuel 17:45). Scripture records that David was not the biggest of men, but God chose him for an altogether different reason (1 Sam 16:7). Standing there before this giant, if David had looked at himself and his limited ability he may have despaired. Instead, David depended on his God and “he endured, as seeing Him who is unseen” (Hebrews 11:27).
And What About Us?
So often I am tempted to be overwhelmed by my own shortcomings instead of totally focusing on how great my God is. He who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us… (Ephesians 3:20).
What kind of power is this that David had, and that we have available to us? It is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might, which He brought about in Christ when He raised Him from the dead… (Ephesians 1:19-20).
When we are tempted to despair, we must remember the resurrection power that God promises to us when we choose to believe Him. The Bible tells us we are not to depend on our own abilities, but we have this treasure in earthen vessels so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves… (2 Corinthians 4:7).
Join the Conversation
In what situations in life do you need to remember that strength is made perfect in weakness?
Note: This article was originally posted in the Biblical Counseling Center’s e-Counselor’s Weekly Guide. You can read it there at The God of Impossibilities.