“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Corinthians 12:9)
God’s design for suffering is that it should magnify Christ’s worth and power. This is grace, because the greatest joy of Christians is to experience Christ magnified in our lives.
When Paul was told by the Lord Jesus that his “thorn in the flesh” would not be taken away, he supported Paul’s faith by explaining why. The Lord said, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:9). God ordains that Paul be weak so that Christ might be seen as strong on Paul’s behalf.
If we feel and look self-sufficient, we will get the glory, not Christ. So, Christ chooses the weak things of the world “so that no human being might boast in the presence of God” (1 Corinthians 1:29). And sometimes he makes seemingly strong people weaker so that the divine power will be the more evident.
We know that Paul experienced this as grace because he rejoiced in it: “Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong” (2 Corinthians 12:9–10).
Living by faith in God’s grace means being satisfied with all that God is for us in Jesus. Therefore, faith will not shrink back from what reveals and magnifies all that God is for us in Jesus. That is what our own weakness and suffering are meant to do.