I caught a few minutes of ESPN’s World’s Strongest Man Competition showing the competition where they are pulling a plane for a short distance.  This isn’t a little single-engine Cessna – they are pulling a 96,000+ pound commercial aircraft.  It was amazing to watch a feat of strength that seems unreal to me. 

I often think about strength in a physical sense with the idea of six pack abs and big muscles all around.  I think of guys who battle at the line of scrimmage, who jump out of buildings with a basketball in their hands, who run 100 meters in 9 seconds but every now and then I think about a strength that is never seen, a strength that defies what I imagine.  David was a character of such strength.  He was picked to be a king yet the reigning king was working hard to kill him.  It took strength to live with that everyday.  I think about Abraham who wanted a child and then, when told by God to make Abraham’s son a sacrifice, marched up the side of the mountain as instructed.  It took a strength I cannot fathom.  What about Peter?  He denied Jesus 3 times but came back to him again.  It takes strength to admit your faults and re-enter the life of one you hurt.  And then there’s Jesus.  He came to earth knowing he would give his life in the most painful and agonizing way imaginable but he never hesitated, never tried to go hide and see if his destiny would go by.  Sure, he asked if the burden might be taken off him but he never flinched at God’s will for him and he gave his life so I can be free from satan.  It is a most unusual strength that will carry a man through beatings and hanging on a cross to saying, “Father, forgive them for they don’t know what they are doing.”  It’s an unusual strength in it’s intensity and in the fact that it only comes from a source we don’t see and we don’t control.  To build our muscles, we have to take action and take control.  To possess the kind of strength Jesus had, we have to give up all control and all desire to be in control.

I want that unusual strength that only comes from God.

Grace and peace to you.
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