God’s Power Unleashes Extraordinary Potential

Date: March 7, 2024

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.  Ephesians 3:20


The next time you feel that your life does not really count, that because you are just a single individual, you cannot do much to right the wrongs in life– remember that a paper clip, a tiny one-inch paper clip, saved a 500,000-pound experimental plane from crashing and breaking into pieces.  An experimental jet airplane known as the SB70A took off from its home base all right, but when the pilots were ready to bring the plane down, the landing gear would not cooperate.  No amount of juggling would release the landing gear.  Joseph Cotton, the copilot on the plane, took a paper clip and short-circuited a relay panel, which forced the balky nose gear into landing position.

Pilot Al White said, “I am convinced we would have broken the plane to pieces if we had tried to land without the nose gear locked into position.”  A paper clip saves an experimental jet plane!  History tells us that on a number of occasions a very insignificant item or object becomes the means or inspiration of accomplishing great things.  A spider who strung a web across a garden path was the inspiration for the suspension bridge.  A kitchen teakettle, singing on the stove, gave Watts the idea of inventing a steam engine.  A swinging lantern in a tower gave rise to a pendulum, and an apple that fell off a tree, landing on the head of Isaac Newton, gave impetus to Newton’s defining the law of gravitation.

We often minimize our potential, saying, “I am just one person.”  You may be just one person, but you are, nevertheless, an important person.  It’s proper for you to understand you are a person of value and worth because that is the way God feels about you.

In the Old Testament, a young man by the name of Samson took the jawbone of a donkey and slew a thousand Philistines.  It was not because he looked himself in the mirror that morning and said, “I am going to be a success today.”  The Bible tells us that he had given his life to God, and the victory was the result of God’s power that came through the indwelling Holy Spirit.

Have you forgotten the youthful shepherd boy, David, taking five stones and a leather-thonged slingshot to kill Goliath?  Should I remind you of a beautiful Jewish girl by the name of Esther who saved a multitude of Jews and averted an ancient Buchenwald, or Auschwitz, by her courage?  A Moabite girl by the name of Ruth became the great-grandmother of David and a progenitor of Christ, because of her bravery.

Here is the insight:  A little bit in the hands of God becomes a great and powerful weapon for good.  You may actually feel that your life does not amount to much.  In a sense that is good, because you will not be so prone to yield to pride.  Then, it will be easier for you to trust God, and lean on His direction and guidance.  Trusting God gives a man some backbone so that he can say—as Paul did–“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13).  This is not the haughty boasting of a man who thinks he is a big shot.  It is the humble reliance on God to do what He wants you to accomplish.  It really is not a matter of what you can do, but what God can do through you.  Our great need today is not for high-pressured salesmen convincing the world of our worth, but dedicated men and women who realize their human weaknesses, and ask God to give them strength to rise above them by His power.  This is not the psychology of self-esteem, but the power of God that turns failure to victory and weakness to strength.  It is God working through us to accomplish His will and purpose. And, that is what success is all about.

Resource reading: 2 Peter 1.