I was one of those high school kids who waited around until I was 18 to actually get my license—and even then, I didn’t get my own car until sophomore year of college. Yes, I had parents that could drive me most of the time. And yes, I was anxious, uncertain (and rather lazy) about the whole thing. But because of my weak driving abilities, I was taken on far greater adventures than I could have imagined.
Like the time my friend Trent and I tried to go see some friends who played in a screamo band. We had the address and found the street, but the venue was nowhere to be found. So we barged into a bar, stopped by a Subway, and even inquired at a nail salon, but no luck—so we left and ate dinner at an Italian place nearby.
I can hear you now: “Weak story bro!” Yes, but it was an adventure with a friend, a memory I’ll never forget.
Or the time I worked at camp, and we went into town for a few hours. It was a tough summer with a lot of tension and pain amongst the staff, so on the way back in, as we drove down a dark road surrounded by tall pine trees, we sang along to “I’m Not Okay” by My Chemical Romance and screamed as loud as we could.
It’s starting to sound like I was a real emo kid back in the day. I wasn’t… I just hung out with them…
I could go on, but I’d probably bore you. Because as it so happens, sometimes the most amazing adventures you experience… aren’t really that exciting to others. But sometimes it’s those interior adventures, diving deep into friendship, struggles, dreams, and fears, that leave you changed at the end of the day. L'essentiel est invisible pour les yeux. (What is essential is invisible to the eye.)
I miss the days of relying on others for a ride. These days I can hop in my car and go anywhere at any time. Back then I had to learn the virtue of patience. I got to listen to some… interesting music that I would have never chosen myself. I had to help out and act as the navigator (often with disastrous results). I went places I never could have gone or experienced on my own.
“…For when I am weak, then I am strong.” (2 Cor. 12:10)
How about this?
“Because I am weak [unable, powerless, incapable], I am (supernaturally, miraculously, incarnationally) strong.”
Because we cannot live perfectly, love purely, give wholeheartedly—we can through Christ.
Because we are imperfect, Christ makes us imperfect. Because we are unable, the Spirit gives us the ability. Because we are undeserving, the Father pours out mercy undeserved.
Most days I’m not thanking God for my weaknesses, let alone boasting and bragging about them. But I must remember every weakness I have, every time my hands are open, every empty space inside, is another opportunity for God to come in and show His power, His glory and His goodness.
Where does God need to take you? Will you let Him lead? It’s ok to be weak. Don’t worry. God knows where He’s going.
“I'm so thankful that I'm incapable / Of doing any good on my own” (“Thankful” by Caedmons Call)
Go out for a meal and ask a friend or family member to choose. Have no say in the matter. Whatever they choose, go there and find the beauty in that place, that meal, that relationship. Even if it’s McDonalds.
Write a list of all your struggles, fears, weaknesses, etc. “I can’t _____.” For each entry, write out what God can do, has done, and promises to do. “But You ________.”
Post this list somewhere where you will see it every day. Any time you say “I can’t _____” follow it up and pray, “But You ______”
Let every cry of weakness be transformed into a song of reliance.
Sometime this week, put yourself in the passenger seat (literally or figuratively). Let someone else lead, and in that space of time, dive deep into the Great Commandments. Love the person you are with by asking them questions, praying for them, helping them not get lost (ideally). And love God with your heart, soul, mind and strength and:
Treasure the times God has led you on a path you never expected
Praise Him for being your good Shepherd
Ask yourself, “Who is driving my life?” What changes do you need to make? (If you feel led to sing “Jesus, Take the Wheel” go ahead. No judgment here.)
Be still and know that He is God. And God is in control.
Evan Weppler— evanweppler.com