“I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit” (Ephesians 3:16, NLT).

The fateful spider bite that gave Peter Parker...

I’ve always been a Spiderman fan. I owned a couple of Spidey comic books as a girl and read them over and over (I wish I still had them—they’d be worth a lot of money). When the movies came out, I thoroughly enjoyed seeing Peter Parker, Mary Jane and villains like Doc Ock come to life. For you non-Spidey fans, Peter received his power from a spider bite and was transformed from an average teenager into an amazingly strong super being.

That’s fantasy of course. In real life no one has super powers. We all have to get along with our natural human strength and most of us have enough of that to function. The strength we more often lack but desperately need is on the inside. Inner strength is what helps us hold on to honesty and integrity in the face of temptation or the scorn of those who feel we should behave as badly as they. It’s what helps us keep going in the face of adversity. But we can’t manufacture much of that on our own. True, lasting inner strength comes from God the strong One, through the Holy Spirit who empowers us as we stay connected to Jesus—no spider bites necessary.