One of the best questions you can ask yourself is, "What are my weaknesses?"
Stay with me here...
Most influencers and thought leaders in today's culture will tell you to focus on your strengths, to find your gifts, and surround yourself with people who enhance those gifts. Not bad advice...but it also isn't the best advice. Here's why:
Your strengths are God-given. Any truly honest person knows that every accomplishment, achievement, and accolade is a gift. While important, your strengths don't invite others to participate in your life. A person who only shows strength builds an invisible wall to those of us who aren't perfect.
Your weakness is your purpose. Your weakness is your true strength. God has no use for perfect people: they don't exist. Miracles and breakthroughs only occur in weakness - often our darkest days.
Perfect example: my own life. If I didn't struggle with addiction and alcoholism, I wouldn't even have this website, this non-profit, or anything relevant to talk about. People find strength in my weakness. I am currently homeless, and other homeless people find hope in that. It makes me relatable. Being honest about my weaknesses, fragile heart, and broken past is what opens the door to love.
My weakness is an open door for God to walk through. My so-called strengths only make me prideful and cause me to try doing everything myself. My strengths eliminate the need for community.
When we weave the fragile strands of our lives together, a rope of great strength is created. A wise man named Vance Havner notably said,
"Christians, like snowflakes, are frail. But when they stick together, they can stop traffic."
Paul said it like this,
"I am quite happy about the thorn...for when I am weak, then I am strong - the less I have, the more I depend on Him."
All of God's giants were weak people. Moses struggled with anger, Abraham struggled with fear, David was an adulterer and a murderer, Paul struggled with physical handicaps, and Job faced poverty and illness. Think about it.
Your most effective ministry will come out of your deepest hurts. Vulnerability is attractive, and other people are going to find healing in your wounds. Get real with others, and watch God show up.
If you're struggling with anything at all, feel free to send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org - we can walk through it together and build a strong bond with the very threads of our weakness. I love you so much! -Zack