Paul and His Disability

II Corinthians 12: 7-10

or because of these surpassingly great revelations. Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

As we continue to study Biblical people afflicted by disability; we turn to Paul. Paul is the author of several of the New Testament books. He was on fire for God and traveled near and far to spread his passion. Prior to his would find Paul, who was then named Saul persecuting Christians. Yes, this man not only persecuted Christians, he was affected by a disability and yet he was beloved by God!

In this passage you can see that Paul called his disability “a thorn in his flesh”.  He is crying out to God asking him to remove this thorn. He is clearly frustrated at his situation. God chooses not to heal Paul. God also chooses not to let us know exactly the disability. Some speculate it was a seizure disorder…others think it is migraine…yet other Bible scholars claim it is a vision impairment. Whatever the condition…God has an incredible plan for Paul and he expects Paul to carry it out even with this disability.

What a comfort! Our disabilities may be frustrating. They may drain us of all our energy. We may feel afraid or ashamed of our differences. Whatever the circumstances….remember that god has a plan for us and he knows we will carry it out despite our perceived shortcoming. It makes me feel better to know that even Paul did some grumbling about his physical limitations, but he still pushed ahead and was an incredible advocate for our Lord. Take heart and remember that God is right there beside us helping us, loving us, but most of all knowing that we are capable of doing anything we put our mind to even with our disability.

It is my prayer that you study more about Paul and learn how he puts God first despite his frustreation. When you feel like you are alone with your struggles turn to God and ask for help. God will be right there to love and strengthen you.


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