God loves us when we are weak, but He wants to make us strong. It’s true. The Bible is filled with stories of how God empowers broken men and women to conquer enemies, pull down strongholds, move mountains, and accomplish His work on earth.
Gideon sure felt weak. He referred to himself as the “least” in a family whose clan was the “weakest” in his tribe. But God sent an angel who greeted the tired and broken man with these encouraging words: “The Lord is with you, O mighty man of valor.” It took a little persuading, but God gave amazing strength to this unlikely hero who defeated enemy armies and returned Israel to her glory.
God wants to make us strong–especially in our marriages. When we’re strong in the Lord, we don’t drain our spouse through our neediness. My husband David and I deal with this subject in more detail in our recently released companion books: Eight Great Ways to Honor Your Husband/Wife.
God’s original purpose for marriage was to provide companionship. He looked at Adam and said, “It is not good for the man to be alone.” There was no “suitable helper” for Adam, so God makes a “helper.” (Genesis 2:18-24). Sadly, our English word, helper, has evolved to a very watered-down version and can mean anything from a distress call, to roadside assistance, to domestic servants.
The word translated as “helper”, or ezer, means “to support.” Actually, as one scholar points out, ezer is actually a combination of two roots meaning: “to rescue, to save,” and “to be strong.” Ezer is used over twenty times in the Old Testament–just twice for the woman. The other times, ezer refers to God Himself as the helper, especially during battles. So when David says, “The Lord is with me; He is my helper, I look in triumph on my enemies,” he uses the word ezer (Psalm 118:7).
Ezer is related to the word for “rock,” or eben. Thus, the Ebenezer stone mentioned in the Bible was a “stone of help.” It was a tangible reminder for the Israelites of the Lord’s power and support. Even the famous prophetEzra’s name comes from ezer and means “helper.”
Wives, let’s think about what it means to be strong like a “rock” for our husbands, our families and the broken and hurting world around us. Your challenge is to draw strength from the Lord so that you are a source of strength for a husband who will sometimes be weak.
Now, I don’t want you guys to feel left out. So tomorrow, we’ll take a closer look at Gideon and explore how God transformed a man who felt “less than” into a “mighty man of valor.” I’ll say it again. God loves us when we are weak, but He delights in making us strong!