Daily Manna 20th Sep 2021

Dear Subscriber,
Here is todays daily manna from Peter Pollock:

SEPTEMBER 20                    

Bible in a year: Eccl 4, 5, 6   2 Cor 12

Scripture: 2 Cor 12: 7:   And lest I be exalted above measure through the abundance of revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me lest I be exalted above measure.

God gave Paul a “thorn” in his side to keep him humble so that he would not get carried away by the abundance of revelation that God had granted him since his  conversion. Paul had allowed himself man’s “foolishness” as he boasted about the things that had happened to him during his life as God’s servant. It was a veritable horror story and one that certainly confirms that God never promised us an easy passage. Certainly if we are having things comfortable there is need for some self-analysis because something is wrong!

The preaching of the gospel and the building of the “real church” is a tough calling! But having highlighted the sufferings, he tells of the revelations and talks about an “experience” when he was taken up to the “third heaven”. He was not sure of whether it was in the body out of the body but he had been caught up into paradise and heard unspeakable things that he was not at liberty to share. This was obviously one of the great moments for him but having just touched on it, he was very quick to add that all his mountain top experiences earned him the “ thorn”, a “gift” from God that ensured that he stayed humble and lowly.  It was a messenger from Satan, continuously buffeting him whenever he was tempted to become exalted. Maybe Paul did not understand the “thorn” at the beginning because three times he asked God to remove it, but God’s answer was that His grace was sufficient for Paul! But by the time he came to write this letter to the Corinthians he had a very clear picture of the “thorn” and it’s purpose in his life and ministry.

Some argue that the “thorn” was not a sickness or infirmity but whatever it was, it’s affect was that Paul would rather glory in his weaknesses than strengths, simply because “when I am weak, I am strong “.  He took pleasure in reproaches, persecutions and distresses because God’s power became even more obvious in these circumstances.    
It all gets back to the simple matter of dying to self! And so if the ministry is high profile and successful, God introduces “thorns” just to remind us that it is all about His grace!