My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.  — Psalm 121:2

I am a person who thrives on acknowledgement of a job well done.  I love to be praised for my accomplishments, to have someone notice and point out my hard work as being “above and beyond.” 

Because of that, you’d think that I would love it when people say, “I admire your strength.”  “Wow.  I wish I had your strength.”  “God gives these things to people who have great strength.”  But I don’t.  Actually, those types of phrases make me very uncomfortable. 

It has taken me many years to realize that I have NO strength.  Absolutely none.  If I had to depend solely on me to get through my life, I would not be here anymore. 

Now, it is extremely hard for me to ask for help, to admit that I need help, or let someone else help me.  I am a VERY independent person by nature.  I would prefer to do things all on my own.  But I have realized over the years, that every time I try to get through my hardships on my own power, I fail.  Miserably.

Thank goodness that God has ALWAYS been there to be my strength (even when I failed to realize his presence).  The Bible is filled with reminder after reminder of God being the strength that we need to get through the hardships of this life…

It is God who arms me with strength… — 2 Samuel 22:33a

Look to the LORD and his strength; seek his face always. — 1 Chronicles 16:11

The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped.  — Psalm 28:7

The LORD gives strength to his people; the LORD blesses his people with peace. — Psalm 29:11

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.  — Psalm 46:1

My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. — Psalm 73:26

Surely God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid.  The LORD, the LORD, is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation.  — Isaiah 12:2

For the foolishness of God is wiser than man’s wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man’s strength. — 1 Corinthians 1:25

I can do everything through him who gives me strength. — Philippians 4:13

…I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you. — Isaiah 46:4b

As much as I would like all of the hardships in my life to just disappear or somehow fix themselves making my life a walk in the park, I think that it is good for me to have these hardships.  The hardships keep me from relying on myself.  They wake me up to the reality that I am not the center of my universe.  That all of the strength that I think that I have will NEVER be enough.  I will fail.  God is there to be my strength and my rock.  To teach me again the meaning of one of my favorite Bible verses — The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall because it had its foundation on the rock. — Matthew 7:25

My prayer is that I can be that house.