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Hard-pressed on Every Side, Yet Not Crushed
9/2/2015

And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 2 Corinthians 12:9 (NKJV)

 

God told Moses to command the children of Israel to bring to him pure oil of pressed olives for the light, to make the lamps burn continually within the Temple (Lev. 24:2).  Pure oil comes from pressing the olives and squeezing them until it pours forth. 

 

As I think about this I am reminded of how through the trials, tests, and tribulations of our lives, we are actually pressed much like these olives.  The result is an amazing strength is produced in our lives.  For example; the Apostle Paul pleaded with the Lord three times for the thorn in his flesh to be removed, but the Lord refused.  Why would Jesus not remove whatever was afflicting Paul, and why would He allow us to be pressed like olives?  We can find the answer in God’s Word.  When Jesus declined to remove Paul’s affliction He then told him, My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness” (2 Cor. 12:9).

God’s mighty power finds its full scope in our human weakness.  It is important for us to understand, it will always be God’s power doing every great work on, in, and through us.  It will always be His power with which we are given every good gift and ability.  We are weak jars of clay and our Great Potter should always be glorified through our weakness.  We can see Paul explaining this great truth in his letter to the Corinthian church.  

But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us. We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed—2 Corinthians 4:7-9 (NKJV)

Q:         How should this impact our mindset as Christian believers when we encounter tough situations within our lives?

Let’s face it, none of us looks forward to hardship, but by knowing this truth we can find great comfort in understanding that we are being strengthened in our faith and endurance (Jas. 1:2-4), and knowing the excellence of God is being manifested in the pressed oil produced as a result of any weakness we have. 

I want to encourage you to think and pray upon this today.  Choose to surrender to God’s plan and will the next time you are tempted to complain about something you may be going through. 

STUDY QUESTION: According to the Scriptures contained within this devotional, what can we learn about any trial, or infirmity we may experience?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Do you trust God in every trial?

PRACTICAL APPLICATION: Choose within your heart to surrender your will to God’s when enduring any suffering or hardship. 

MAKE THIS YOUR PRAYER TODAY: Father, thank You for teaching me Your Word.  Thank You for helping me to understand Your heart and will.  Help me to glorify Your name when I go through trials.  May others see Your great power produced in the pressed oil of every hardship I patiently endure. In Jesus’ precious name, amen…

Be Blessed, Pastor Scott 

 


Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000