Is Our Strength Too Small?

by Terri Gillespie

If you falter in a day of adversity, your strength is small. Proverbs 24:10 TLV

What was I thinking?

An amusement park ride that included the words “drop” or “doom” probably wasn’t the best choice for me—even twenty-five years ago. But the hopeful look on my then teenaged daughter’s face trumped my fear—and good sense. I couldn’t disappoint her again.

I suppose working fifty-hour weeks had built a sizeable reserve of guilt for her to draw from.

The ride advertised itself as the tallest in the park. “Breathtaking views,” it promoted. Unfortunately, as we sat in the gondola on the precipice of insanity, those views were only for a few seconds. And with the gondolas being completely exposed to the elements, I felt like I was about to freefall—without a parachute—over four hundred feet. Pure, unadulterated terror.

Sitting out there those seconds, I remember questioning how the ride worked. I may even have said—screamed—that out loud. In the state of pure fear, I had forgotten how the monstrosity worked.

Mind you, for the hour we stood in line, I had watched how it worked—over and over again. Listened to the teenaged attendant give the safety briefing, as he strapped us in.

Yet, once we perched over nothingness hundreds of feet in the air, everything I had seen or heard was forgotten.

You know what it reminded me of? Receiving a potential death sentence. Except I had absurdly spent good money to willingly receive that verdict.

The true test of wisdom’s strength in our life is when trials and tribulations befall us. When we’re strapped in and riding life’s “drop of doom.”

I can spout wise words with the best of them, but when challenges arise, especially ones that push those weak areas of my heart, I can still falter. That what-do-I-do panic moment before His truth kicks in. The standing on a precipice with a stampede behind me. My first thoughts are “Yikes! Help!” or a sense of hopelessness. Or, “How does this faith-thing work again?”

But the sooner I pause and look up, out of my physical situation—or down at the drop—my Heavenly Father can guide me and show me how to proceed. He can give me that peace, that perfect shalom.

And the shalom [peace] of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Messiah Yeshua [Jesus]. Philippians 4:7 TLV

I fully own to being weak. Still, if faltering points me to my true strength, my Abba, then that’s not too bad. “But He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly in my weaknesses, so that the power of Messiah may dwell in me” (2 Corinthians 12:9 TLV).

Heavenly Father, I acknowledge my weakness. I would rather be wise and completely dependent upon our True Strength right away when adversity comes, but I know that You will walk me through the minute I come to You. Thanks for Your patience. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

This article is brought to you by the Advanced Writers and Speakers Association (AWSA).

About the author: Award-winning author and beloved speaker Terri Gillespie writes stories of faith and redemption to nurture souls. Her novels, devotionals, and blogs have drawn readers to hunger for a deeper relationship with their Heavenly Father, and His Son Jesus. Her newest novel, Sweet Rivalry, releases later this year. 

Join the conversation: What do you do when you panic?

8 thoughts on “Is Our Strength Too Small?

  1. Thanks for this that reminded me that Adonai keeps me through the ups and downs of life. You are always a blessing to me, Terri.

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    1. Thanks for your kind words and encouragement, Priscilla. Our Heavenly Father is there for us, isn’t He!

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  2. Watching the experience of others go through the event (that ride) is not the same as going through it yourself. The same with our walk with Jesus. Watching others walk with Jesus is not the same as walking with Him ourselves. We each bring our own package to that experience so we each experience that event (walk with the Lord) differently.

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    1. I love that, Teresa! We can watch other’s walk and be inspired, but ultimately, we “bring our own package” to our journey. Well said!

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  3. As a lay counselor (and for my own life), I use the concept of “facing death.” Of course, it’s not literal death but it feels like it. And whether a roller coaster or something else, if I call upon the Lord’s strength to do or confront that which “feels like death,” the danger diminishes each time I face it and follow through. Thank you, Terri, for your wisdom.

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    1. Fear can do that, can’t it? I remember thinking, “How does this work? Am I going to die?” I try to remember how that sense of panic feels in my body when it comes, and remind myself, yes, it does work. I am not going to die–at least not in the eternal sense. Thanks for your professional insights, Kathy. So helpful!

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