What Can I Do?

SDA JournalDevotional


Scripture: I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.  Philippians 4:13

Observation:  Which strengtheneth. Paul recognized Christ as the source of all his own power, hence there is no element of boasting here. All that needed to be done could be done by Christ-given strength. When the divine commands are faithfully followed, the Lord makes Himself responsible for the success of the work undertaken by the Christian (COL 333, 363; 8T 16). In Christ there is strength to fulfill duty, power to resist temptation, vigor to endure affliction, patience to suffer without complaint. In Him there is grace for daily growth, courage for multiplied battles, energy for devoted service. [The Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, Volume 7. 1980 (F. D. Nichol, Ed.) (178). Review and Herald Publishing Association.]

Application: This passage is probably one of the best known and best loved of Paul’s writings.  We have learned it, memorized it, quoted it, and believed it.  Although I wonder if we believe it applies in all instances in life.  But do we really believe it when we are facing marital difficulties?  Do we really believe it when thoughts of separation and divorce come to mind and find a dwelling there?  Do we really believe it when our relationship seems hopeless and we feel helpless?

I would like to suggest today that it is when we’re going through the biggest challenges and difficulties in our marriage that we need to believe the power behind these words.  It is by repeating to ourselves the words of the promise contained in this text that we can have a change of attitude which will lead us to have a change of heart.

The cognitive-behavioral school of psychology teaches us that if we want to change our behavior we must first begin by changing our thinking.  Both of those can only be truly possible through the power and strength of Christ.  As we consider what Jesus went through on the way to His death for us, our sacrifices and our pain are minimal.  But what we can accomplish with his power has no limits.

As a marriage and family counselor I have seen miraculous transformations.  Marriages that had become like death sentences have come back to a revival of feeling and experience.  Marriages ravaged by infidelity had a renewal of their trust and their love.  Marriages where abuse abounded experienced healing and became havens of peace and harmony.  Marriages which were falling apart came back together with renewed energy and strength.

If we believe the power of today’s text is only in the spiritual realm, we have short=changed God’s power in every other aspect of our lives.  Claim His power to change you today and everyday.  Claim His power to change your attitude toward your spouse and your marriage.   Claim His power to transform your marriage from wherever it is and until it becomes a foretaste of heaven.

A Prayer You May Say: Father God, change us with Your power, change our life, and change our marriage for the better so that it can not just be a foretaste of heaven but that it should be a great joy today and everyday.

Used by permission of Adventist Family Ministries, North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists.



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