Proverbs 24:10 states that fainting in times of adversity shows how small our strength is. Here are different ways this statement is made, looking at various versions of the same text:
“If you falter in a time of trouble, how small is your strength!” – NIV
“If you fail under pressure, your strength is too small.” – NLT
“If you faint in the day of adversity, your strength is small.” – ESV
“If you are slack in the day of distress, Your strength is limited.” – NASB
“If thou faint in the day of adversity, thy strength is small.” – KJB
“If you do nothing in a difficult time, your strength is limited.” Holman Christian Standard Bible
“If you grow weary when times are troubled, your strength is limited.” ISV
“If you faint in the day of trouble, your strength is small!” – NET Bible
“If you faint in a crisis, you are weak.” GOD’S WORD® Translation
From what we all experience from time to time, it seems as if no one knows which adversity / trouble / crisis will cause one to faint, but it looks like almost every one faints at one time or the other. This why I believe we need to pray for strength now and always – to enable us stand in difficult times.
I notice that some bible heroes like Elijah, David and others had times they did not faint and times that they fainted. We saw the powerful Elijah fainting in 1 Kings 19, but there were other times / occasions when he was strong: for instance when Ahab sent soldiers to arrest him in 2 kings 1:10,12 … Elijah replied, “If I am a man of God, let fire come down from heaven and destroy you and your fifty men!” And again the fire of God fell from heaven and …)
Interestingly also we saw the brave king David in 1 Sam. 30 as someone who encouraged himself, but in 1 Samuel 27:1 we saw a weak and scared person. He said, “And David said in his heart, I shall now perish one day by the hand of Saul…” When his son, Absalom, harassed him he fled the throne.
Our prayer is that God will help us stand and overcome when we face our own situations.
We found out that even Jeremiah cursed himself when he was facing ministry hardship. The question is, what do you and I do when we face our own hardship / crisis?
- If you have been married for a long time and there is no child, at a point in time what would you do? Would you look for fetish powers as suggested by friends and families or will you just keep praying?
- If all of a sudden sickness shows up as in the case of Job, do we curse God or say I will still trust God even if I die?
- If you suffer unemployment, do you proceed to sell drugs, get involved in other illicit lifestyles or keep asking and praying?
- When husband or wife decides to leave and end the marriage, is it not a big enough problem that should cause fainting? Should one faint or hold on.
- What do we do when a pregnant woman goes to the labor room, delivers her baby but she herself ended up bleeding to death?
Elijah’s own problem led him to run away and become a fugitive; he did not want to be around anybody; he became suicidal; he forgot he carried fire power of God; he lost his God-given role. With this we know that fainting is a dangerous and can bring more disaster.
But why is it that we all have the tendency to snap / break / faint when times are hard?
Ephesians 6:12 says it is because “… our struggle is not against human opponents, but against rulers, authorities, cosmic powers in the darkness around us, and evil spiritual forces in the heavenly realm.” -ISV
So what do we do? How can we stand? Where would the strength come from?
- Put on the whole armor of God. Paul who suggested this has gone through and overcame many adversities in life – See Ephesians 6:13. The weapons in the armor of God are listed from Eph. 6:14-17.
- Pray. Use these weapons plus continuous prayers (as stated in verse 18), you will be able to stand.
- Sing (Ps. 61:2)
- Encourage (talk to) yourself and talk to God – Ps. 42:5-9; 2 Cor. 4:8-9; Rom. 8:31
- Look unto Jesus who is able to settle you – 1 Peter 5:10
- Be hopeful and take time to learn what the ordeal is teaching you – James 1:2-4
- Endure, this will lead to God’s approval for your life – James 1:12
- Be rest assured that God will deliver you at long last – Ps.34:19
Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior is the only one who did not faint in time of crisis. Let us ask Him to help us since we are hidden in Him.
Let us pray
Pray for faith to remember that Jesus had helped you before and He can do it again.
Pray for grace to prayer during hardship
Pray for grace to forebear and hold on during crisis.
The Lord will see you through in Jesus name.