The Thorn

I don't know if Steve Brown was right on this or not, but he said this weekend that Paul's thorn in the flesh was insecurity. Now Steve is wiser , funnier, a better theologian and much better speaker than I ever will be, so I would not disagree with him on a bet. He is also older and much more frail, given his heart condition, so I would not want to argue with him and get him all stirred up. He might spit at me! I would prefer to just do lunch with him in any case.

And I really want to agree with him. Reason? It may be a universal theme for Christians, for people, and especially for those in ministry. We are an insecure lot. It does not really matter if we just received encouragement, got an award or some other demonstration of our value; we can easily slip into the mindset of "we are worthless and people do not like us!"

It is a shame and I want to re-affirm how we can do better here. As Steve said, know that God is sovereign and His acts are good and He loves us. Then remember that your identity is Christ. I would suggest reflecting on your baptism. Remember the day or not, you were marked and sealed as "His" on that day. Don't let Satan, or TV or pop culture convince you otherwise. They have no say in your value. The currency of your life is the blood of Christ and there is no "exchange rate" for the world to get to you.

Lastly, I would encourage you to get a bit of righteous indignation. It is OK to shake your fist a bit at the world or your sin nature and say, "Who the heck are you to accuse me of being nobody? I am Some body's!"

Now having said that, Paul's thorn did not go away, and I suspect we will be insecure going forward...but..but there will be moments when we will be secure in Christ and that will be good. We should rememebr those too. And when we are insecure, lets note it and use the weapons of the world and devil against them by running to Our Father and crying out, "Abba! I am frightened and I know it is stupid! Hold me and reassure me that You are my strength and portion forever. Then send me back out to do your bidding!"

Worship Well.