4th sunday in lent

Paul wrote, “[The Lord] said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness.’ So, I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.” — -2 Corinthians 12:9 (NRSV)

OUR congregation suffered a horrendous tragedy when a young member, Melanie, who had gone off to college, was brutally murdered. Melanie had been an active member of our worship team. Her family was devastated, as were her friends and fellow students. Our church banded together to create a moving and meaningful candlelight vigil, a memorial service, and later a one-year anniversary service.

After the trial, the young man who killed her was sentenced to life in prison. Melanie’s parents were speaking with the press when they heard the sobs from the guilty man’s parents. Excusing themselves, Melanie’s parents went to the other family and embraced them, both families mourning the loss of a child. What an amazing picture of God’s grace!

How often are we unwilling to embrace someone who has wronged us in some trivial way? Yet the parents of a murdered daughter embraced her murderer’s parents. That power dwells within all of us when we act with the spirit of grace and Jesus’ love.

By Kate Titsworth (Texas, USA) – The Upper Room Devotionals


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