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This room is for general discussion that doesn't specifically fit into one of the other CatholicMatch rooms. Topics should not be overly serious as this is to be more of a "cafe setting."

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I shared a link to Amy Grant's new song, "Don't Try So Hard" with a (Non-Catholic/Non-Christian) friend of mine via email who was going through a hard time and she wrote back with questions about the lyrics and about Jesus.

Here is the song: www.youtube.com in case you haven't heard it.

My friend wrote: "Thanks for the song, but I don't understand two things within the lyrics. They are:

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 Christs power may rest on me. That is why, for Christs sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

Her Question: "I thought God wanted us to be strong. Like, God helps those who help themselves. I'm confused."

Her 2nd Question: Lyric: I will strive for grace not perfection." What is grace? What is the difference between grace and perfections?"

I have my thoughts although it's hard to explain as someone who has believed in God my whole life and was wondering about the suggestions of others.
Jun 15th 2013 new
It is a common belief that somewhere it's written "God helps those who help themselves" but no one can really say where it's written. It's certainly not in scripture. However, the lyrics in Amy's song are based on scripture. If you consult a concordance, you will certainly find the references. 2 Cor 12:9 "My grace is sufficient for you for My strength is made perfect in weakness."

As for grace, it flows from Christ who is the source. There are many scriptural references to grace. One admonition is found in 2 Peter 3:18 "grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord...Jesus Christ." My very condensed Bible dictionary says St. Paul uses the term perfect of the "spiritually mature" Christians who know true wisdom and want all men to be perfect in Christ (1Cor 2)

This is extremely succinct. There are better sources to be found that might answer these questions better. I'll just bet there are scripture scholars/theology majors roaming these forums who could help.


Jun 15th 2013 new
biggrin Thank you Carol

I really want to make sure I explain it in the best way possible to her. I feel that she is exploring
the thought of being open to Christianity.

If anyone else has any suggestions, please feel free to chime in!!!
Jun 15th 2013 new
(quote) Carol-737878 said: It is a common belief that somewhere it's written "God helps those who help themselves" but no one can really say where it's written.
I believe it's a quote from Aesop's Fables.
Jun 18th 2013 new
(quote) Angela-304987 said: I shared a link to Amy Grant's new song, "Don't Try So Hard" with a (Non-Catholic/Non-Christian) friend of mine via email who was going through a hard time and she wrote back with questions about the lyrics and about Jesus.

Here is the song: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OfGvXfe9LK8 in case you haven't heard it.

My friend wrote: "Thanks for the song, but I don't understand two things within the lyrics. They are: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 Christs power may rest on me. That is why, for Christs sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.Her Question: "I thought God wanted us to be strong. Like, God helps those who help themselves. I'm confused."

Her 2nd Question: Lyric: I will strive for grace not perfection." What is grace? What is the difference between grace and perfections?"

I have my thoughts although it's hard to explain as someone who has believed in God my whole life and was wondering about the suggestions of others.
First of all, Angela, thanks for the link to the song. It's a beautiful tune I had not heard yet. Leave it to Amy to release a song like this... smile

I'm no theologian/Catholic scholar in ANY sense of the word at all, and this is not from any Catholic source book, but I always have kind of felt that only when we admit to our weaknesses can we truly be a conduit for God's grace to others. Our own pride and stubbornness prevent God from using us to help others -- we feel we know better and won't "let go and let God." I believe that we are put in others' lives sometimes to be an instrument that God uses to help that person. When we are weak and the opposite of proud, God can work through us -- His strength can show through us when we aren't proud. "For when I am weak, then I am strong."

The way I feel about the second lyric you mention is that we ask for God's grace knowing that we are not perfect and can never achieve perfection on our own. Only in God can we be made perfect through His grace. Since there is no way we can make ourselves perfect, we should ask/pray for God's grace to be made perfect in Him.

Lastly, may God bless you and use you to bring this soul closer to Him. Again, maybe He is using your connection to your friend to allow His grace to flow to her. Good luck with your friend!

God Bless,
Steve
Jun 18th 2013 new
Thank you so much Marge and Steve. This is a huge help and your suggestions will be a big help when I speak with her.

I am open to any other feedback from any other budding theologians out there!

Agreed, Amy Grant is a great musician.
Jun 18th 2013 new
Christ did not come as a powerful being and he certainly could have. He came as an an infant, grew up in humble means and bore a cross to His death. We are called to do the same. We're not called to be strong & powerful (except in our faith). We're called to carry our crosses too and lift them up to him. Hardships should be thought of as blessings that bring us closer to God. I believe this is the context of the lyrics.
Jun 18th 2013 new
Thank you for this song & this dialogue. I've never posted here before - I think i'm resistant to the "new" technology, but that's a fear that comes from ignorance. I agree Amy Grant has a great emotional connection, not to mention is extremely talented.
I just wanted to say thank you because I've been going through a very lonely spell, met a "great guy" who turned out to have emotional problems. I couldn't help him - he thought I needed help. It made me sad, but now little things are popping up telling me it's okay to let him go on in his delusional state. It was a heavy burden I didn't even realize I was carrying!
Anyway, thanks to you all for this "conversation."
Jun 18th 2013 new
Wow, Patti, honestly I'm glad for you that you got away from him if he was not a positive person to be around. It was most likely God blessing you.

This song has definitely been my favorite as of late. I think we take on too much ourselves when we forget that God is always there for us. And I believe that when we truly lean on Him and have faith that He will help us, that is when He does his best work.
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