Yesterday I attended an all-day leadership conference at the church where I work. Dread is a strong word, but I was certainly not looking forward to giving up my entire Saturday (and then, of course, Sunday) to be on my job site. I will say that I am so thankful for the day and all it brought, but that’s not why I’m sitting down to write.
We sang a song at the conference that I’ve heard a few times before (and always loved)…it’s called Give Me Faith by Elevation Worship.
The lyrics are all beautiful, but my favorite part of the song is:
I may be weak,
But Your Spirit’s strong in me.
My flesh may fail,
But my God You never will.
I sung it once and thought how true those words are. The second time I sung it, I was nearly speechless as I was struck with the weight of the lyric’s significance in my life.
If you don’t already know, the past year has met me with my fair share of challenges. I moved to Austin, Texas for a job that I lost just six months later. Weeks after my lay-off, I ended a long-term relationship. I then started a brand new job as the Early Childhood Director at a large church, to which I brought neither a degree nor experience to draw confidence from. A major car accident shook me next. I’ve recently dealt with piercing, hurtful words spoken to me out of the mouth of someone who truly doesn’t know me from Adam in addition to serious difficulty in my apartment housing situation. Listen, I’m not asking for a pity party–this has just been my life.
And I get it time and time again–“You’re so strong, Blair.”
To which I yell–and excuse my French here–B.S.! I haven’t previously been able to articulate the friction that the above statement causes my soul, but it is significant. Because the truth is, I’m not strong at all. I’m the shell of a woman, actually. I doubt myself and my talents and abilities, I don’t trust others, I have abandonment issues, I ask am I good enough? Am I smart enough? Am I creative enough? To which I answer no, no, no.
The reason why friends and family have perceived me as strong is because many years ago I asked Jesus into my heart, and He is mighty. I invited His Holy Spirit to dwell in my soul, mind, heart, and body–simply responding to the invitation He extends to each of us on a daily basis.
The song aforementioned lays it out clear as day: I may be weak, BUT YOUR SPIRIT’S STRONG IN ME.
To explain what it feels like to have the Holy Spirit dwelling within me is impossible. It’s everything life-changing and good, everything truthful and honest, everything real and beautiful. It’s powerful and freeing and the only way I make it.
And I claim strength in God alone, not in myself, my talents, my successes, my past, present, or future, my dreams or aspirations, my finances, or my relationships. I can find strength amidst difficulty and challenges because God’s Spirit is strong in me.
But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth. -Acts 1:8
What I need you to know is: I’m not strong. Without Christ, I would literally crumble into an anxious, depressed, withdrawn, resentful mess in the wake of the crazy I’ve walked through in the past year. Instead, I’m able to find complete freedom in His strength, knowing that He truly has a plan for me and is working all things in my life together for my good (Romans 8:28).
Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. -2 Corinthians 3:17
Are you trudging through darkness and pain and difficulty? Are you broken and weak? Perhaps you’re spiraling into a depression, or past unhealthy behavior patterns, or returning to toxic relationships. To which Jesus says, “Come, find rest and strength in me.”
I’d love to talk more with you about this if you’re interested or have questions about my journey. You can comment below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.