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Lenten Devotional – The Fourth Sunday in Lent – Joy

Scripture: Luke 23:43

43 Jesus answered him, “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.”

I had a friend who was, for a second time, diagnosed with cancer. She took the information hard, but having beat cancer before, she had a determined mind to do it again. As she took each chemo treatment, she prayed and visualized Jesus holding the medicine as it was delivered into her body. She used alternative methods as well, by asking me to give her healing touch treatments. After each treatment she felt more relaxed and hopeful.

As time passed it grew clear to her that this time she was not going to win against the cancer. She told me at one of the last treatments, “I don’t want you to feel you have failed me.” I gave her a hug and wondered why she was concerned about me, when she was the one who was dying.

Seeing her for the last time in her bed, I thought how beautiful she appeared. I felt a peaceful joy come over me that I believe she gave me.
Years later, I read this quote from Willem ten Boom, “Of course we should be happy… A child of God is a citizen of heaven and the attitude of a Christian must be one of praise when someone has died. Our grief…would just be one of selfishness on our part, of grieving for the sake of ourselves.”

Prayer: Dear Father, help us remember who we are. That as your children, we have your promise of life with you in paradise.

– Kris Bertsch – Wanatah, Indiana



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