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Happy Reading, Richard
Sunday, June 5, 2016
Triumph in Tragedy
by Max Lucado
What do you say we have a chat about graveclothes? Sound like fun?
Sound like a cheery topic? Hardly. Make a list of depressing subjects,
and burial garments is somewhere between IRS audits and long-term dental
No one likes graveclothes. No one discusses graveclothes. Have you ever
spiced up dinner-table chat with the question, "What are you planning
to wear in your casket?"
Most folks don't discuss graveclothes.
The apostle John, however, was an exception. Ask him, and he'll tell
you how he came to see burial garments as a symbol of triumph. He didn't
always see them that way. A tangible reminder of the death of his best
friend, Jesus, they used to seem like a symbol of tragedy. But on the
first Easter Sunday, God took clothing of death and made it a symbol of
Could he do the same for you?
Could he take what today is a token of tragedy and turn it into a symbol of triumph?
We all face tragedy. What's more, we've all received the symbols of
tragedy. Yours might be a telegram from the war department, an ID
bracelet from the hospital, a scar, or a court subpoena. We don't like
these symbols, nor do we want these symbols. Like wrecked cars in a
junkyard, they clutter up our hearts with memories of bad days.
But could God use such things for something good? How far can we go
with verses like Romans 8:28 that says, "In everything God works for the
good of those who love him"? Does "everything" include tumors and tests
and tempers and terminations? John would answer yes. John would tell
you that God can turn any tragedy into a triumph, if only you will wait and watch.
Could I challenge you with a little exercise? Remove the word everything from Romans 8:28 and replace it with the symbol of your own tragedy. For the apostle John, the verse would read: "In burial clothing God works for the good of those who love him." How would Romans 8:28 read in your life?
In hospital stays God works for the good.In divorce papers God works for the good.In a prison term God works for the good.
If God can change John's life through a tragedy, could it be he will use a tragedy to change yours?