News reached me this week of a long-lost friend who had a double mastectomy for breast cancer. I had neglected to stay in touch after moving more than 15 years ago, but a mutual friend had delivered the news. He said, “She’s going to be alright; she’s a strong woman.”
Perhaps it was meant as a compliment, that somehow if she were a “strong woman,” she’d win the battle against breast cancer. When I was going through treatment for breast cancer, I felt anything but strong. I’d second-guess my decision-making when my doctors gave me options, and I’d have days when I’d cry for no reason. I felt vulnerable and weak, not having control over whether the cancer would take my life or I would survive. It was a feeling of total helplessness.
Instead of trying to hide my vulnerability, 2 Corinthians 12:9 encouraged me: “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.”
I was glad to boast of my weaknesses of needing people to help me make decisions, cook for me, and listen when I cried. Admitting my weaknesses made Christ’s power more obvious in my life.
I learned to trust in Christ by being a “’not so strong’ woman.” Instead, my friend should say, “She’s going to be alright; she knows that strength comes from God.”
Blessings, my friend,
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