“Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness” (2 Cor 12: 7-8).
Throughout the ages there has been a debate over what the thorn Apostle Paul might have experienced. A little background here is that Paul trying to counsel the church against pride was prompted to share about “a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven. Whether it was in the body or out of the body I do not know—God knows. And I know that this man—whether in the body or apart from the body I do not know, but God knows was caught up to paradise and heard inexpressible things, things that no one is permitted to tell” (1 Cor 12: 2-5). There seems to be agreement that this “man” happened to be Paul himself and yet that he should not become puffed up he was left with a tormenting thorn in his flesh.
Scholars have argued what that thorn might have been with some pointing to his weak eyesight though Paul never laboured to clarify. What matters here for us is that there was that “thorn” ever constantly driving Paul to his knees.
Perhaps here we may reflect that virtually every saint while here on earth has experienced a thorn in some way. A thorn could be in form of lack of certain finances, a personal loss, a family upheaval or even a physical handicap. Thorns are those uncomfortable experiences every believer encounters once in a while.
There are two things about these thorns. First, theirs is the purpose to drive us to our knees lest pride takes over us and we feel we do not need God in our lives. Secondly, that however disconcerting is the thorn; the Lord will always provide sufficient grace for us to endure and overcome- “for my grace is sufficient for you!”
Today, whatever the thorn you may be encountering do not be too terrified. Just look up to the Lord who will provide you sufficient grace to overcome.
Prayer for today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, where I do experience a thorn in my life, I look up to your grace for the power to overcome, this I pray in Jesus’s name.