True Super Power
Paul prays a wonderful prayer for the Colossians in the first chapter of his letter to that church. In the prayer, he asks that the Colossians would be “strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for the attaining of all steadfastness and patience” (Colossians 1:11).
In our world today, we like the idea of being “strengthened with all power” ... just look at how many blockbuster superhero movies have been produced. Nor is the Church exempt: many Christians have a hunger to perform or see miracles that shock and amaze.
But is that what this verse is all about? Is that what it means to be “strengthened with all power”? No; not by a long shot – for two reasons.
First, I think that some people (certainly not all) hunger for the miraculous not because they want to see God glorified or people’s lives transformed, but because they want to experience power. The focus is on self, not on God. It is on the experience. The emotion. Quite frankly, it is on titillating the senses because we want to be entertained.
Second, the verse doesn’t stop with that phrase. Paul explains what power is really for – it is so that we can be steadfast and patient! That’s what we see when we read it all the way through: “strengthened with all power ... for the attaining of all steadfastness and patience.”
Think about it – God wants to strengthen us with power so that we can be:
... patient with the person who drives us nuts.
... a faithful friend to someone who is suffering year after year.
... strong when trials and tribulations come our way.
... a shoulder to cry on when someone’s life falls apart.
... steadfast to do God’s will when things are not going as we hoped or planned.
I somehow think that “The Adventures of Steadfastman” or “The Rise of Patientman” are not going to be the next box office mega-movies. But I do know that the vast majority of people whose lives we touch with our steadfastness and patience will glorify God for His overwhelming goodness. And I also know that we will get something much better than rave reviews from a fickle media – God Himself will give us “the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him” (James 1:12).