The Test of Our Strength

Michael Beck

“I also could speak as ye do: if your soul were in my soul’s stead, I could heap up words against you, and shake mine head at you. But I would strengthen you with my mouth, and the moving of my lips should asswage your grief.” (Job 16:4,5)

Job’s friends had a hard time putting up with him. They couldn’t deal with his broken spirit. They had enough of his complaining. When he was at the top of his game he was a pleasure to be around. But now, in his afflicted state, he was a drain on them. They tried to straighten him out with their words; but they only added to his grief. Words that arise from our agitation with another rarely, if ever, help them.

Here is the problem: our inability to bear with the infirmities of the weak reveals that we are also weak. Only those who are spiritually strong can bear the infirmities of the weak (Romans 15:1). Oftentimes our greatest strength is to be silent; to wait on the Lord; to pray and ask Him for wisdom; to have a word in due season for the weary.

If we are to bear the burdens of the weak we must be strengthened by God. We must receive the love of God which is first of all patient. Love bears all things. Love endures all things. God’s love put up with all of us when we were at our lowest place. When we were without strength Christ died for us. He demonstrated His love for us by looking beyond our problem and seeing our need. Instead of showing frustration toward us He had compassion on us. It is through His longsuffering and patience that we are saved.

Do not despise the weak. Without Christ we are all weak. Let Him strengthen you so you might be a strength to those who are having a hard time hanging in there.

Michael Beck is a pastor in the Dallas, TX area and the main author on Signpost. Receive a daily devotional he publishes every morning via email.