My Great Rescue
Café Menu for Friday, September 27, 2013
Today’s Special is: Perfect Peace for the Imperfect
Carefully prepared just for you by your friend, Michelle Axton Kelly
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.
2 Corinthians 12:9 NIV
Mountain biking has become my family’s favorite activity following a move to Colorado. We treasure our weekend rides winding through trails filled with shady trees, ponds, farm houses and gorgeous views of the mountains. Despite this, I experienced a Saturday where it was a challenge to get on my bike.
That week had been a struggle. My heart had fallen straight into an emotional pit. All the optimism I had was replaced by doubt. Why? I longed for perfection in everything I touched but instead I felt inadequate. Overwhelmed by life and the roles I juggle. No matter how I tried this was a valley and I struggled to pull myself out.
As we headed for a new trail I grumpily noted our path offered zero shade. We were greeted instead by a steep, one mile climb. Ugly brown patches of grass held signs warning us to watch out for bears, coyotes and mountain lions. Terrific.
With a tearful heart I pulled ahead to have quiet time to pray. I felt like such a failure and pleaded for God’s help to get me up that hill. The huge mound of dirt suddenly represented possibility and hope.
As the climb became tougher I felt God ask me to focus, not on the destination, but on reaching small goals. A sunflower 20 feet away. The large rock on the left. Each success gave me just enough energy to push toward the next goal.
At the top I gasped for breath. I did it! Elated, I turned to see my family pulling up behind me. I’ll never forget how they were framed by the most incredible view of the Rocky Mountains. It seemed every tree and even the clouds had been perfectly placed for this moment.
I cried celebratory tears. Just as the bible tells us in 2 Corinthians 12:9, God showed me in my moment of perfect weakness that He would be my strength. He’d carry me through trials and navigate life’s dangers. He reminded me that God uses my imperfections in surprising ways. On this day He showed me that my necessary reliance on Him led to a reward that was more beautiful than anything I could imagine. A reality where my imperfect self fits… just perfectly.
Have you ever had a season that brings you to your knees? Moments like this can challenge everything we believe about ourselves, especially when we allow the world to whisper that we don’t measure up. When this happens we need to tune out other influences and seek God’s help. Go into survival mode if needed. Ask friends for prayer, turn off social media, be still and listen for the wisdom of your Heavenly Father. He doesn’t seek your perfection, only your heart.
Dear God, hear our hearts that cry out to You for help when trials leave us feeling unworthy in a world that seeks strength and perfection. Help us to humble ourselves before You noting our weakness and rely completely on You for Your wisdom and help.
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.
Matthew 11:28 NIV
I love “Here” by Kari Jobe. This song heals my soul and I pray it will encourage you today. When we lay our burdens at God’s feet He gives us strength and peace. May His hope be yours today!
For more encouragement, visit Michelle at Confessions From the Back Pew where God uses the best and worst parts of her life to encourage others to develop a truly personal relationship with Him.
© 2013 by Michelle Axton Kelly. All rights reserved.