Know Your Weakness

by Aaron

Last Sunday, we talked about how God has gifted those who believe in order to further the gospel. He has given us natural talent and spiritual gifts. The problem humanity faces is, that our greatest strength, usually also leads to our greatest weakness and the largest area of temptation in our lives. Becoming the you God wants you to be means we must understand temptation.

James 1:13-14 “When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; but each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed.”

In Dealing with weaknesses:

  • Never do it alone - God designed us to live in community because we are stronger together.
  • Listen To God’s Spirit - When we are honest about temptation we usually have to shut the Holy Spirit up before giving in to the temptation.
  • Notice How Satisfied Your Soul Is - We become vulnerable to temptation when our souls are dissatisfied. If we do not find satisfaction in God, our hearts will look for it somewhere else.
  • Recognize what seems to block you - The most dangerous force in the world is not sickness or injury or bankruptcy... IT IS SIN. We do not get tempted by that which repulses us. Temptation starts close to home with the passions and desires that God wired into us and tries to pull them off course.

Professionals break people down into nine different types of people (I don't know why just nine, but I won't argue with that). Here is a list of those nine types of people including their strengths, weaknesses and examples of people in the bible.

Strengths: Lives with an internal standard of what is good, noble, and true.
Weakness: Can be arrogant when unredeemed. Has high standards that can lead to a secret, inner sense of inadequacy.
Example: The prophet Amos, who carried a plumb line to show Israel the standard God expected of society.

Strengths: Lives out love in action. Has a natural others-centeredness that makes people feel cared for.
Weaknesses: Can use “giving” to manipulate others. Sometimes mistakes servanthood with fear or low esteem.
Example: Martha, who was busy serving while her sister Mary sat at Jesus’ feet.

Strengths: Has a strong desire to grow. Has the ability to accomplish things and add value to those around them.
Weaknesses: Has the temptation to be preoccupied with one’s own success. Sometimes uses other people to receive applause or approval.
Example: Solomon who sought achievement it education, finance, culture, statecraft, and the arts.

Strengths: Loves beauty and goodness. Brings imagination to life.
Weaknesses: Finds that the need to be different can become an end in itself.
Example: King David who had strong gifts as a poet, dancer, and composer.

Strengths: Is a discoverer, inventor, and lover of logic. Holds a passion for truth (even when it is costly).
Weaknesses: Having conviction of being right can lead to arrogance. Can be tempted to withdraw from relationships and love.
Example: The apostle Paul, who loved to study, reason, explore, and teach.

Strengths: Is faithful and dependable. Loves to be part of a great team.
Weaknesses: Is prone to skepticism or cynicism.
Example: Elisha, who became Elijah’s companion and protégé.

Strengths: Has high capacity for and emotional expression. Has enthusiasm that is contagious for others.
Weaknesses: Can have a need to be the center of attention.
Example: The Apostle Peter, who was the first one to leap out of the boat -- even if it meant sinking.

Strengths: Has a passion for justice and desire to champion a great cause.
Weaknesses: Has a need for power that can cause others to feel used.
Example: Nehemiah, who was moved to action rallying followers and defying opponents when he heard Jerusalem was in ruins.

Strengths: Has a natural ability to listen well and give wise counsel.
Weaknesses: Has a tendency to smooth things over and avoid conflict.
Example: Abraham, who was a peacemaker with his wife, his nephew Lot, and foreign leaders; even attempting to mediate between God and Sodom and Gomorrah.

Our greatest strength usually brings about our greatest weaknesses. Knowing both will help us better live on mission in the name of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ. What is your greatest strength and how does it relate to your greatest weakness?