Conntecting the Dots

What Possessed You to Do That?



On Saturday I attended the memorial service for Letisha Reimer, the 13-year-old Christian girl who died following an attack in her high school a few blocks from my home. It’s hard for me to imagine what possessed the 21-year-old drifter who committed this evil act.


“What possessed you to do that?” is a question asked in many contexts. For instance, a parent might ask it when he learns that his teen is experimenting with drugs.


A wife might ask it upon discovering that her husband has gambled away their life savings.


I’ve recently heard of airline pilots arriving for work intoxicated. No doubt someone’s asking them this question.


These are negative examples, and the answers vary: selfishness, fear, unresolved personal issues, poor judgment, or plain ol’ sinful nature. But the same question can be asked in a positive context.


Think about the nearly 90-year-old man who travels to Poland every summer as part of a volunteer mission team (it’s true!). What possesses him to do that?


What possesses a child to save her allowance for a year and then spend it on a toy for a less privileged child at Christmas?


What possesses a middle-aged man to donate one of his kidneys to his younger sister whose health is failing?


What possesses a couple in their late 50s to quit their jobs, sell their home, and get involved in a career ministry with no pay or benefits?


The apostle Paul knows the answer. “Whatever we do, it is because Christ’s love controls us,” he wrote to the Corinthians (2 Corinthians 5:14).


Imagine with me what the world might look like if Christ’s love possessed us: We’d put others’ needs ahead of our own. We’d give and serve with no ulterior motive or desire for repayment. We’d seek to be peacemakers and to promote harmony within our families, our churches, and our workplaces. We’d refuse to take offense at unkind or thoughtless remarks, and we’d not pass judgment on those who don’t measure up to our standards or expectations.


Paul encourages us to allow Christ’s love to control us. Let’s do what he says. Let’s ask Jesus to fully possess our minds, our eyes, our hands, our tongues, and our feet and to love others through us.


Our world is a hurting place and desperately needs hope and transformation. Christ’s love and its power to change lives is the answer. Amen?


#bgbg2 #ChristianDevotions #PowerofLove

4 Responses to “What Possessed You to Do That?”

  1. Diana Stafford

    I love your writing. I started the year out with a devotional book from Guidepost..It was a gift from a sweet lady in my in my church.. I look
    ahead to see when you have your next post. I am so grateful that I found you. I also love getting your e-mails!!

    • Grace Fox

      Hi Diana! Thank you, thank you for your kind words and encouragement. They arrived on a day when I needed them. Thanks for being tender to the Holy Spirit’s voice. I’m grateful that He’s been using the words He’s given me to bless you. Have a wonderful day 🙂

  2. Marge Bennett

    Yes, Grace, the world needs Word-filled, and Faith-filled people who are willing to share their beliefs and the beauty of God with the world.

    I too appreciate your willingness to “give” and to share what God has given you in Christ Jesus. He has made you beautiful to a world we cannot even attempt to figure out and a world that can’t seem to “see” what God has for them, if they’d only get it. But Jesus overcame the world with his love. We can do that too, one step; one person; one message at a time……….one act of love can change so much brokenness.
    Again, thank you Grace for being our friend and lover of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, our Lord, and our Saviour. King Jesus, our friend….who intercedes for us even now. Praise the Lord.

  3. Grace Fox

    Thank you for your encouragement, Marge. I like what you said about overcoming the world one step, one person, one message at a time. Love truly overcomes. We just need to persevere and be patient, knowing God is on our side.


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