In God's garden of grace even broken trees bear fruit

In our July profile, megachurch pastor Rick Warren shared with Justin Brierley about the pain and purpose of his son Matthew’s death. The youngest of his three children had taken his own life after a long battle with depression.

Looking back to the moment before he and wife Kay found out, Warren said: ‘The night that Matthew died, we were standing outside the front of his house with the doors locked. We were waiting for the police to come and break down the door and we feared the inevitable.

‘We were standing, Kay and I, holding each other, sobbing. Kay was wearing a necklace that had two words on it: ‘Choose Joy’. She said: “Choose joy.” I looked at her and thought, ‘Are you kidding me? How do you choose joy when your son on the other side of that wall has probably just taken his life?’ But that’s faith.’

Speaking about the response to Matthew’s death, he said: ‘When Matthew died I received 5,000 letters of condolence from around the world. Everyone wrote from rock stars and prime ministers to presidents. But the ones that meant the most to me weren’t from the VIPs; they were the letters from people that Matthew had led to faith in Christ.

They said, “I’m going to be in heaven because your son brought me to Jesus.” I wrote in my journal: “In God’s garden of grace, even broken trees bear fruit.” And we are all broken…God only uses broken people.”

Read the full article here.

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