2 Corinthians 4:8-9 (NIV)
8 We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair;
9 persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.
On verses 8-9: I love Paul's attitude. No matter how many problems Paul faced, Paul was found a big BUT in every problem. "We are hard pressed on every side, BUT not crushed; perplexed, BUT no in despair; persecuted, BUT not abandoned; struck down, BUT not destroyed."
In the same way, when your life seems full of problems, remember there is always something to thank God for, a big BUT in every problem. Find the big BUT in every problem and focus on it. That big BUT will keep you afloat as it did Paul.
2 Corinthians 4:10-12 (NIV)
10 We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body.
11 For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus' sake, so that his life may be revealed in our mortal body.
12 So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you.
On verses 10-12: At Thrive we often talk about 3 reasons God allows pain in our lives: (1) to refine us (make us stronger); (2) to remind us (that earth is not our final home, that we were made for eternity in heaven); and (3) to reveal God's power through our weakness. Here Paul is talking about the third reason. Always remember that God never allows pain in your life to be cruel to you or because He isn't there or doesn't care. Rather He has allowed that difficulty in your life so that He can reveal His power through your life -- "so that his life may be revealed in our mortal body" (v11).
Thank You, Lord, that You allow this current difficulty I am in not to be cruel to me but because You want to reveal Your power through my life, to show that there is an all-surpassing power that lives in me, that is not from me but from You. So come, Lord, fill me, and reveal Your power through me today. In Jesus' name I pray, AMEN.