Does all strength have a source?
Are you capable of becoming great or achieving mighty things without a source? Are you able to do anything extraordinary without the help of anyone else?
In my brief experiences in life, my short answer would be no. Growing in maturity over the last few years should confirm this, but then again, maybe I’m wrong.
What do you think?
Let’s talk about strength, and not just your everyday strength stuff either, but super strength. What or who do you think of when it comes to super strength?
My first answer was super heroes. Our culture is driven by huge companies making monster movies about heroes and villains. I love watching the impossible made possible. I laugh and cry at the romance and comedies.
C’mon, you do, too. I envision myself as the one “saving the day.” But there is something important that we can’t miss in these super hero movies, and that is the source of strength. What do I mean?
• Thor has his hammer
• Ironman has his suit
• Superman relies on solar energy
• Batman has extreme training & discipline
Just from these few examples, you can start to see that every superhero has a source of strength. If you take their source of strength away, you take away everything from them.
If you have watched any of the Iron Man movies, you would know that Tony Stark is a rich and arrogant man. Among the three movies in the franchise, you’ll find him to be beyond selfish. This selfishness (spoiler alert) cost him his house, almost getting the women he loves killed and nearly all his belongings destroyed. As much as he wanted to be strong enough to survive without the suit, he learned that he absolutely needed the suit. We especially find this at the end when his most advanced Iron Man suits can operate by themselves.
So what does knowing the source of your strength have to do with you and your Christian walk?
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. – Philippians 4:13
You, like many, have probably heard this verse over and over again, but there is much more to the verse than the few words that make it up. Paul is trying to show the Philippians that his source of strength is Christ. He tells them that whether he has plenty or has nothing at all, it is irrelevant, because his strength lies in Jesus. He can do nothing without his source of strength.
How many times have you been at a really low point in life or a really high point in life and totally left Jesus out of the picture? Me = Guilty.
This isn’t the only example in the Bible either. Paul expresses the same type of feelings on strength in verses Ephesians 6:10, 2 Timothy 4:17 and many more. The apostle Peter shares some thoughts on the subject in 1 Peter 4:11.
If anyone speaks, he should do it as one speaking the very words of God. If anyone serves, he should do it with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ.
It is clear to me that the mighty men of the Bible had a source of strength. Quite honestly, they wouldn’t even be a blip on our radar today if it wasn’t for the words breathed into them by the Spirit.
How does this apply to your everyday life?
Do you think this could apply to your work? Yes! How many times have you accomplished something great or achieved a big milestone and felt you deserved all of the credit? Was there a team involved? Were you praying daily?
It can be so easy for us, especially men, do forget about our source of strength at work. There are times when I get overly stressed and totally forget about my source. I keep Christ at the bottom of the list, and then suddenly remember Him again. Start the practice of keeping Christ at the center of your work. He will give you the daily strength you need.
Do you think this could apply to your family? Yes! How many times have you been in a big fight with your spouse or close family and left God out of the situation? My wife and I struggled in our marriage for our first few years because we thought we could handle all of the issues on our own. We tried to make our marriage work without a source of strength. And without that source, Jesus, we nearly divorced.
Jesus is now a clear source of strength in our marriage and we are happily married. Do we still have fights and struggles? Yes. But we talk about them with each other and with God. It has made all the difference.
Take any other situation in your life and apply this idea.
So does all strength have a source?
Well, you may not have an awesome hammer or an even cooler Iron Man suit, but you do have the everlasting power of Jesus. Learn to live like the Apostles and keep Jesus at the center of your source of strength.
Now it’s your turn. In what ways have you have you tried to live life with no source of strength? Or share what ways you have found Christ to be an effective source of strength in your life. Let’s build each other up!