Hope for the Powerless

April 12, 2013 | 16 comments


We’ve been without power now for three days. The governor declared today that our little  rural county is in a “state of emergency.” Even my candles seem tired, flickering in the last bit of wax. And the birds flit about in a state of confusion, finding no branches on which to roost.

This morning, I curl up on the chair with my iPhone and my Bible, tapping a few words onto a tiny screen, like I might be able to reach somewhere warm through these tiny letters. Are you out there?

We are warm. We have blankets and bodies and a gas-powered generator that brings flames to the fireplace. We have books and board-games, and even the boredom is a gift.

A storm will make you realize how small you really are, how all your ideas of personal power were a flimsy facade anyway.  And at night, you sit in the dark thinking about how fragile we all are.  Rick and Kay Warren bury a son. My friend sends me a message that her father-in-law has leukemia, and the next day, he’s already gone. Another friend is in ICU with her Daddy, the man who always told her, “Jesus loves you, this I know. It doesn’t get more complicated than that.”

All around us, the world cracks open with pain. And I hear her groaning with every ice-laden tree limb whoosh-snaps to the ground. We know it on paper, and we might even have it underlined in our Bibles, how Christ’s power works best — BEST — in our utter weakness. Down through the annals of history, God has shown a preference for swooping in on the scene to bring super-power to the somber and the sick and the sad and the sullen. I want to stay close to the power source.

Power doesn’t always come the way we prayed for it. But every dark corner and weak moment — every despairing thought and powerless situation — can be molded into something new, inside the hands that created Resurrection power.

Can I always plug into this one enduring truth:There is no one — or no thing — beyond His power.

“You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.” — Romans 5:6

(Written from iPhone screen.  Trying to process so much pain in the world this week — of which ours is so small in comparison– and the cross is always the lens by which I try to see, especially in the dark.)

by | April 12, 2013 | 16 comments


  1. Chelle Strech

    I really need to read what you had to say today. Thank you.

    God bless you.


  2. 3dLessons4Life

    I am thankful that He can conquer anything… Thank you for this reminder. Praying you get up and running there again soon. Hugs

  3. Kris Camealy (@KrisCamealy)

    Christ died for the ungodly. I have to repeat this to myself again and again. While we were still sinners… I’m a mess this week, watching the world, watching my own children, hearing my own thoughts–and seeing the stain of sin singe the whole of humanity… praying with you and for you all too, he is our light in the dark eh? And it feels so very dark right now… Love you, friend.

  4. ro elliott

    Power doesn’t always come the way we prayed for it. But every dark corner and weak moment — every despairing thought and powerless situation — can be molded into something new, inside the hands that created Resurrection power.

    I love this…I love the lens your are processing this “adventure” you are on…perspective through the lens of the Cross. blessings and I hope you have power soon!

  5. Patricia Hunter

    Yes, yes, yes! And grateful to hear that you are warm and well and blessed…and for your perseverance in typing all this out on your iphone. xox

  6. audrakrell

    I sit in my office in AZ and look out on a bright, 70 degree day. So hard to believe you are in an entirely different world, and yet we are united in sorrow, united in pain across our great land and especially united in the Glory of Christ. Your words today bring much warmth and I’m praying for electrical power to be restored today. For now, know that we are with you, we hear you and see you, even in the dark. You are never alone.

  7. Diana Trautwein

    Love this. Love you. DON”T love the storm’s after effects. But also know you will learn through it – as you clearly are. Thank you.

  8. Mia

    Dear Jennifer
    Yes, this is so very, very true. Our Pappa God’s power doesn’t come in the way that seems logical to our finite minds. I have found that even when I am physically quite weak, somehow I do manage to go on and we all know that it is only His sweet grace.

  9. Lynn Morrissey

    Powerfully, poignantly written. I keep thinking that Jesus came to the disciples in the storm. He comes to you. He comes to us. And there can be calm in the midst of the storm, power in the midst of darkness, adding to your “S” words solicitude, stillness, and STRENGTH for every dark day, every dire need. Bless you, Jennifer.

  10. Linda

    Thinking of you and marveling at the way you find the Grace in every situation. The suffering in this world is overwhelming to our fragile hearts, but He somehow holds it all in His hands. Thankful you are doing well in the midst of the storm.

  11. Michelle Eichner

    “Power doesn’t always come the way we prayed for it” Needed to hear that today. Thanks, friend. Praying for you & glad you’re ok. Hugs, Michelle

  12. Selah

    Praying with you! Thank you for your words.

  13. susan

    So much comfort in knowing that even though I am powerless, He is POWERFUL. Praying your power comes on soon!

  14. Freedom in the Dance

    There’s nothing more heart wrenching than coming to grips that I am powerless to bring my mother back. But even if I was able to, I don’t think I would. She dances on streets of gold, spinning with Jesus in beat and maybe, for the first time in a long, long time, she’s laughing.
    In the midst of my storm of her passing and daddy going back to NY, I am clinging with whitened knuckles to Him. He has not only sustained me, but when I feel joy over simple things like a blooming coreopsis flower that I’ve always wanted to grow in the Garden of Eden, I remember that one day He will wipe away every tear I cry.
    My the moments you’re spending in intimacy with your loved ones be deepened by the joy that He is with you in this storm.


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