What does grace look like to you?
Grace often shines brightest when the circumstances surrounding it are at their darkest. It’s a person forgiving their spouse the betrayal of their infidelity. It’s extending love to someone who has spewed harsh words and hatred at you. In certain cases, it’s the skilled hands of a doctor rescuing the life of a murderer.
I was struck by that exact imagery recently in the hours following the manhunt of the young man accused of the Boston Marathon bombing. One of the news outlets reported that, after his capture, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was taken to a local hospital to be treated for wounds he sustained in one of several shootouts he had with police.
It was the same hospital where scores of people who had been injured by his bombs had been taken for medical treatment and recovery. Suddenly, many of the same doctors who had tended to the wounds of innocent victims now found themselves using their skill to save the life of one of the men responsible for murdering 3 people, shooting a police officer dead, and severely wounding over 200 others.
Does it seem unfair to you that he should be treated so well? It does me when I think from a human perspective about the ruthless mayhem this young man caused and the victims he created.
But then God leads my mind and heart back to His cross.
As author Philip Yancey says, “Grace, like water, flows to the lowest part.”
The doctors involved didn’t debate about whether he deserved treatment. Doctors seek to heal. It’s who they are. It’s what they do.
My heart breaks for the families whose lives were forever altered on that bright New England day. And, I admit, there’s a part of me that’s challenged with the idea that the person responsible received the same care and attention as his victims. But the fact that he did is a powerful image of just how deep God’s grace runs.
Praise the Lord that all are welcome at the foot of the cross. God seeks to save.
It’s who He is.
It’s what He does.