1103) Overcoming Physical and Spiritual Weaknesses

     Lord Horatio Nelson, British admiral and war hero, achieved all his triumphs by overcoming great physical hardships.

     He was a small and sickly child.  Frail and weak, he fell victim to yellow fever and various other diseases.  He was a navy commander, yet suffered all his life from seasickness.  He lost an eye in Corsica.  Later his right arm was amputated.  In another fight he was heavily wounded in the chest.  He had frequent violent fits of coughing.

     But he had learned to handle pain and suffering, won many battles by courage and brilliant strategy, and it was he who defeated the naval forces of France and Spain at Trafalgar.

     However, the strong and great hero Lord Nelson was not strong in every way.  He had overcome great physical disabilities, but there are other kinds of weaknesses.  Nelson became the subject of a huge on-going scandal in London and Naples through his involvement with Lady Hamilton, another man’s wife.  

     It is not the physical disabilities that are apt to wreck a man’s life, but rather his weaknesses of character.  Proverbs 16:32 says, “He who rules his spirit is better than he who takes a city.”

     Do not worry about your physical disabilities or weaknesses.  They can be the best stimulants to great achievement.

     But be well aware of your specific character weaknesses, and through Christ, strengthen the wall of the fortress that is most exposed to the enemy.

–By Richard Wurmbrand (adapted)

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Here are two stories of individuals overcoming great physical disabilities– a champion gymnast with no legs and a farmer with no legs or arms.  Astounding!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ffQGME3MlYc

http://mvotd.com/meet-chris-koch-farmer-extraordinaire_24ba03ef3.html

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Philippians 4:13  —  I can do all this through him who gives me strength.

II Corinthians 12:7b-10  —  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.”  Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.  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.

I Peter 5:6-10  —  Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.  Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.  Be alert and of sober mind.  Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.  Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings.  And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.

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I thank God for this great opportunity of doing my duty.

–Lord Nelson, English Admiral  (1758-1805)