Once in college, I was summoned to the Head of Student Development for utilizing too much of the school’s bandwidth watching reruns of The Office.
This was not that day; this day was another day.
Once again my presence was requested at the Head of Student Development. And, once again, I sat outside the office contemplating what had led me to this particular predicament.
The staff kept coming in and out for what seemed like an eternity, each one echoing the same sentiment, “are you okay?”
I knew something was different about this trip. Something had gone wrong. Something was out of place. Finally, my pastor comes in and sits down.
I had no idea what to feel or think, so I begged him to tell me what was going on.
He relented, and he said to me: “You father has taken his own life.”
At that moment, I was broken.
The hours after were some of the worst of my life. I was saturated with the feeling of utter despair and hopelessness.
Inside me, the thoughts circled: “What I am going to do? How am I going to move on from this?”
I felt weak.
I eventually made it home. After being with my family for a bit, I was drawn to go to the basement where my father had taken his life.
In the basement, my dad had his desk where he would pay bills and do paperwork, and on that desk, I noticed his Bible, and again instinctively I open it up to see what he was reading. When I did, I saw a note with one verse on it.
2 Corinthians 12:9 — “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.
As I sat there and read the verse over and over again with tears streaming down my face, I realized that I was going to be okay.
Weakness takes many forms, but we many of us approach our weakness in the same way with an attitude that there is no way we can overcome this.
When you do this, you are letting your weakness control you, and furthermore, you are allowing it become your identity.
I realized that even though I was weak and broken, God had me in his hands. I realized that even though the pain of this would only dull over time, I was not defined by it. Instead, God’s grace defined me.
Realizing that truth is what got me through the tragedy of my dad’s death and is what still gets me through it today.
We all experience things that leave us with a lasting scar. However, It is only through God’s grace that you can genuinely overcome your frailty. No matter how broken, hopeless, or helpless, you feel God’s grace is sufficient enough for your weakness.