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Devotionals by Dale O'Shields

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Strength for Weakness

We all have them, and we usually detest them. They frustrate us, discourage us, and sometimes drive us to our knees in desperate prayer. I’m talking about weaknesses.

A weakness is the absence of some positive quality in an object or person; something that is lacking or deficient. In people, it can be a character flaw, a bad habit, a circumstantial impediment, a physical affliction, a spiritual, emotional or relational vulnerability –– some kind of inadequacy that trips us up, holds us back, and limits our potential.

Our human tendency is to highlight our strengths and hide our weaknesses. Admitting our weaknesses runs counter to pride. The view is that weakness is a bad thing. We all want to be perceived as strong, capable, competent, high-caliber people. In the minds of most folks, exposing weakness is something to be avoided at all costs.

While weakness can be a bad thing, according to the Bible it can be converted into something good if we handle it the right way. If we follow God’s plan when dealing with personal weaknesses, what are now liabilities can become incredible assets.

The Apostle Paul learned this lesson. As he prayerfully struggled with some weaknesses in his life, God spoke some transformational words to him. Take a look at what the Lord said to Paul about his weaknesses, and how Paul responded:

"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 … For when I am weak, then I am strong." –– 2 Corinthians 12:8-10 (NIV)

Paul learned, as we should, that weaknesses are great opportunities for God’s grace. When we admit what we lack, where we’re deficient, how incapable we really are, we open a window to great blessings from God. He pours in His grace, His strength, and His power that overcomes and overwhelms our weaknesses. He accomplishes, in and through us, what only He is capable of doing. He transforms our weaknesses into strength!

Where are you weak? What are you struggling with in your life, your circumstances, your character? What deficits are draining and limiting your possibilities and potential? Let these weaknesses draw you into a deeper dependency on God. Know that these weaknesses are great opportunities for God to show Himself strong in and for you. Your weaknesses make you a candidate for His great grace!

Dale O'Shields

For more information, visit the Church of the Redeemer's website.
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Positive changes happen in us when we know, believe, confess and obey God’s Word. When we agree with what God says about us, our minds are renewed, and our choices and habits improve. In this new book from Pastor Dale O'Shields, you will find 25 biblically-based affirmations that will help you think right about God, yourself, others and the world.

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About Practical Living

As it has for over a decade, our weekly broadcast continues to provide fresh, contemporary insights into Christ's teachings. Tune in and "get practical" in your walk with the Lord!

About Dale O'Shields

Dale O’Shields is the founding and Senior Pastor of four campuses in Maryland, just north of the greater Washington, DC area.

Dale O’Shields is known for his relevant teaching style focused on practical application in people’s lives. His messages are regularly broadcast on radio and television. He is also the author of several books, devotionals and group study guides.

Dale O’Shields is a frequent conference speaker with a passion for leadership development and church growth. He has served as the Senior Pastor of a thriving local church for over 25 years. His heart to equip and encourage pastors and church leaders has led him to be a key founder of United Pastors Network.

Dale O’Shields has been involved in pastoral ministry since 1978, serving previously as Director of Campus Ministries and as an adjunct instructor at Regent University in Virginia Beach, VA. He and his wife Terry have two married daughters and seven grandchildren.

Contact Practical Living with Dale O'Shields

Mailing Address
Church Of The Redeemer
19425 Woodfield Road
Gaithersburg, MD 20879


Phone Number
(301) 926-0967