Scripture for Today: II Corinthians 1:8 “For we would not brethren, have you ignorant of our trouble which came to us in Asia, that we were pressed out of measure, above strength, insomuch that we despaired of life.”
I can still remember seeing my Mother seated at a mangle just like this one. She would feed the wrinkled clothes into the heated roller and they would magically come out the other side smooth and wrinkle free. Sometimes she would allow me to feed it easy items like handkerchiefs and pillow cases. But the dress shirts were a challenge that was better left to her. I was surprised to learn that one can still buy a rotary iron! Perhaps the newer models do not run the risk of mangling a clothing item or inattentive fingers!
Today’s verse describes the trouble that Paul and Timothy experienced as something that pressed on them. They faced such great pressure that they did not think they would survive. But Paul realized that the crushing pressure of their pressing circumstances had a purpose. That purpose was to rely on God’s power and not on themselves (verse 9). They understood that there would be no deliverance without God’s power. Recognizing this, Paul asked for prayer.
My husband often says that life is made up of one crisis after another. No one is spared trouble, although we try to avoid it where we can. But for the believer, it is a comfort to know that those pressing circumstances are not happening by chance. The Lord is using them to encourage a greater dependence on Him, on His power and on the prayers of His people. Every pressing trouble is a reminder that I need Him. I cannot do life without Him.
Lord, help me to rely completely on You and Your power.
(Look familiar? This is a re-post due to summer ministry schedule.)