It’s a question I’ve wrestled with my entire life.
After spending 13 years in the military I was always led to believe that projecting strength is always the answer. Come to think of it I can’t recall one time in my military career where I was ever encouraged to show weakness as a sign of strength.
This question has surfaced from time-to-time in my life, but never more real than it has over the course of the last 7 days. Only being able to eat a meal of rice and beans when someone else contributes $25 that provides 100 school meals to children through the World Food Programme is a humbling experience. Having to ask for a $25 contribution and then count on a yes answer in order to eat can be unnerving. In fact it has been.
What if I’m told no? What if my request is ignored? What if I’m faced with the rejection of silence? What then?
I am only beginning to imagine what the 300 million chronically hungry children of the world are living through day-in-and-day-out. I mean, I’m only living this reality for 25 days. After that I have the option of going back to choosing all the comforts I had access to before these 25 days started.
But the children…
… they don’t have that option. It’s not part of their reality like it is mine. It’s not something they hope for like I do because for them it’s not real.
As I was reading through a passage in Compassion by Nouwen, McNeill, and Morrison I was struck by this thought about the compassion of God:
“Our God is a servant God. It is difficult for us to comprehend that we are liberated by someone who became powerless, that we are being strengthened by someone who became weak, that we find new hope in someone who divested himself of all distinctions, and that we find a leader in someone who became a servant. It is beyond our intellectual and emotional grasp.”
As I wrestle with the idea of finding strength through my weakness (a very foreign concept beyond my intellectual and emotional grasp indeed) I’m comforted in knowing I serve a God who gives me hope in the weakness I seem to fear sharing.
What do you think? Have you found strength in the story of your life through showing weakness? I would love to know about your experience with that. Please share with us below.