I have been dragging my feet about the idea of autumn. It’s not that I don’t love the season because it is probably the one I feel the most energized about. I love the colors, the food, the lack of a significant holiday that I have to shop and attend programs celebrating.
It’s just that change is always hard for me and I have been pining about losing daylight hours and our pretty flowers on the patio. But this morning when I opened the back door and felt a crisp, cool twinge to the air…my heart leapt and I am eyeing our remaining blooms and dreaming of pumpkins and mums to replace them….sigh…there really is a time for all the seasons <3
So yesterday I promised a summary of takeaways from the book “His Mighty Strength” by Randy Frazee.
I shared one of the biggies already on a post – https://www.laurareimer.net/the-surprising-way-we-can-be-empowered-by-powerlessness-sigh/
Today I am hopefully going to be able to give you a simple synopsis of a few more.
I don’t know if this is something others have tried to teach me in my years of learning about Jesus, and I certainly hope this is not a false belief but the whole book is based on the fact that Jesus set aside all of His powers and deity to become fully human.
Now this is not saying He was not God. He is most assuredly a part of the Trinity – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. But He did not possess the omnipotence, omnipresence and omniscience of His position when He came to earth.
Randy Frazee points out that the things He did that were miraculous were done in the power of the Holy Spirit and He was showing us how we also would have access to that same power. When He calmed the waters or performed miracles of healing, it was not His power as a human but the power of the Holy Spirit at work within Him.
This just blows me away.
As I read the Scriptures in light of this information, I realized how many times I look at things Jesus did and say…well yeah…I mean… He was God. Sure He could do that.
I am not sure how I have made it this far in my journey missing the whole point of this, but this information has removed quite a few more scales from these flawed eyes. Jesus was showing us the way to have, as humans, a relationship with God that included private prayer, trusting and believing Him, forgiving, enduring, healing, teaching, encouraging, caring…all the things He did while on earth WITH the power of the Holy Spirit in us.
He points out that the empowering we get from the Holy Spirit is not just to produce miracles in the way we might think of miracles. And yes, we should be seeing miracles as we activate the power of God given to us as believers.
He has a list of some very practical ways the Holy Spirit empowers us in the fruits of the Spirit:
To unconditionally cherish and forgive others (love)
To have inner contentment and purpose in spite of our circumstances (joy)
To be free from anxiety because things are right in our relationships (peace)
To forbear under the unavoidable pressures of life (patience)
To act positively towards others (kindness)
To be full of integrity (goodness)
To be loyal and trustworthy to people God has placed in our lives (faithfulness)
To be thoughtful, considerate, and calm in our relationships with others (gentleness)
To restrain ourselves form destructive behaviors (self-control)Randy Frazee, His Mighty Strength – Nelson Books, 2021; page 162
I don’t know about you, but these are all things I tend to strive for in my own power thinking I should be able to do this.
I need God’s power activated in me on the daily to accomplish these characteristics I so desperately desire. And God says…I have given you the Power you need to overcome your own shortcomings and be what I made you to be.
But I have to access that power daily. Frazee reminds us throughout the book that this is not a one and done transformation. As we learn to walk in the Spirit and grow in our relationship with Jesus, we make progress in this. God is always there to help us when we stumble, fall short, forget, stray…He is always with us and for us to grow in grace to be more like Jesus.
He had a wonderful example of how to pray to release our desire to control when we are realizing we really never had control.
By using a physical exercise with a simple three step prayer, Randy Frazee has given me a process that is helping me immensely.
First you tighten your fist as tight as you can, and as you continue to tighten it you talk to God about what your frustration is. I talked to Graham about this when he was angry with one of his siblings so I am going to use that.
I suggest that he tell God how mad he gets when his brother is unwilling to play a certain sport or game with him. So he talked to God about his anger as he tightened his fist.
Second, you release your grip, opening your palm upward. As you feel that sensation of all the tension leaving, you pray to release your desire to control the situation. In Graham’s case, we prayed that we know he can’t control his brother’s choices or personality.
Third, you turn your relaxed hand upside down and empty the situation into God’s hands. So for Graham, we dropped his relationship into the hands of the God who made both of them uniquely different. We asked God to help them to build a strong friendship as brothers and to show Graham how to love his brother even when they were not getting along. We thanked God for having brothers and we let God take the anger and hurt feelings.
The author of His Mighty Strength points out that this prayer of release may have to be done numerous times before we see any change in the situation, but each time we pray this kind prayer – we are changed and we grow.
I hope some of these are helpful to you today.
God bless and I will see you tomorrow <3