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A survivor’s thoughts

I could wish that I myself were cursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my people. v. 3

After a 71-year-old South Korean woman was rescued during the tragic sinking of a ferry boat, she struggled with survivor’s guilt. From her hospital bed she said she couldn’t understand how it could be right for her to have lived through an accident that had taken the lives of many who were so much younger. She also regretted not knowing the name of the young man who had pulled her out of the water after she had given up hope. Then she added, “I want to buy him a meal at least, or hold his hand, or give him a hug.”

This woman’s heart for others reminds me of the apostle Paul. He was so concerned about his neighbors and countrymen that he said he wished he could trade his own relationship with Christ for their rescue: “I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were cursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my people” (Rom. 9:2-3).

Paul also expressed a deep sense of personal gratitude. He knew he didn’t understand the ways and judgments of God (vv.14-24). So while doing everything he could to proclaim the gospel to all, he found peace and joy in trusting the heart of a God who loves the whole world so much more than we ever could. — Mart De Haan

Lord God, Your ways are so far beyond our comprehension, yet we know without doubt that You love us. Help us trust Your loving heart with the things we don’t understand.

READ: Romans 9:1-5

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Gratitude to God leads to growth in godliness.

Bible in a Year: 2 Kings 22-23 and John 4:31-54

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