a flaw by any other name

That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Corinthians 12:10

As I study the Bible I find it is filled with flawed, broken people. There are liars and thieves, cowards and cheats. It has those that are angry, some that are bigots. Really the Bible covers the whole range of character flaws one can find throughout humanity. Yet God has chosen people like that to use for His purposes over and over.

Moses was an angry man. He proved during his life. God used him to deliver His people from Egyptian slavery and give them the Law. David was a murderer and adulterer that God used many times during his life. He wrote many of the Psalms. Matthew was a thief that wrote one of the four Gospels. Peter was impulsive and coarse, but he preached the first message of salvation and saw thousands receive Christ, be saved and be baptized.

Maybe we are too quick to decide that someone is disqualified for ministry because of some perceived flaw. Maybe we ought to take a lesson from scripture and realize that God sees things differently than we do.

Flaws, or what we perceive as negative traits or characteristics, can often be seen as strengths when viewed from another perspective. For example, being overly critical of oneself may be viewed as a flaw, but it can also be a strength in terms of setting high standards and striving for excellence. Similarly, being too sensitive may be seen as a weakness, but it can also be a strength in terms of being compassionate and empathetic towards others.

One way to reframe flaws as strengths is to think about the positive intentions behind them. For example, someone who is overly critical may simply be trying to improve themselves or others, while someone who is sensitive may be trying to be understanding and supportive. By recognizing the positive intentions behind our flaws, we can begin to see them as strengths rather than weaknesses.

Another way to reframe flaws as strengths is to think about the unique perspectives and skills they bring. For example, someone who is shy may be seen as weak, but they may also have a great ability to listen and observe, which can be valuable in certain situations. Similarly, someone who is impulsive may be seen as reckless, but they may also be able to make quick decisions and take risks, which can be beneficial in certain circumstances.

When we recognize and embrace our flaws we are much more apt to turn to God for help in those areas of our lives. When David’s sin was revealed it was then that he turned to God for forgiveness and deliverance. Paul’s overzealous nature was put to good use once he stopped pursuing believers and began to preach the gospel instead.

It’s also important to remember that flaws are not always negative. They can be the things that make us unique and different from others. Embracing our flaws can help us to be more authentic and true to ourselves, which can lead to greater self-acceptance and usefulness to the Kingdom of God.

Furthermore, sometimes flaws are simply a matter of perspective. For example, someone who is described as “lazy” may simply have a different approach to time management, or they may have a different set of priorities. On the other hand, someone who is described as “overly ambitious” may simply be highly motivated and focused on their goals.

So, flaws can be seen as strengths when viewed from a different perspective. By recognizing the positive intentions behind them, thinking about the unique perspectives and skills they bring and embracing them as a part of our unique selves, we can begin to see them as opportunities and strengths rather than weaknesses. Additionally, it’s important to remember that flaws are often a matter of perspective and that what one person sees as a flaw, God may be able to use as a strength.

Lord I pray that you will reveal to me my flaws and weaknesses. Where they are hindering me help me to overcome them. Use me as I am to further your will in my life and the lives of those around me. Where I am weak make me strong. Humble me in what strength I have so that I may rely on You and give you the glory and honor for any success I find.

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