Two-Minute Meditations
Two Minute Meditations
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“We truly felt a hedge of love encircling our home.”
Circle of Love

        We reveal our identity in many different ways. Clothes tell something about our occupation or the group with whom we associate. Accents reveal where we live or where we grew up. Business cards reveal our occupation and phone numbers. Bio sheets tell about our education and job experience.

        Jesus, however, says Christians are identified by one particular trait. It is the one unmistakably accurate way others can know we belong to him: “All people know you are my followers by your love for one another.”

        After I had spoken on this topic in another city, a lady told me a story powerfully illustrating this point. A series of events in her town profoundly impacted everyone and gave witness to the character of Jesus Christ in the lives of a loving group of people.

        On August 28, 1993, Mark Knutson was diagnosed with cancer. It was an especially bad form of cancer and he was already in the latter stages of it. He wasn’t given long to live. Mark was not well enough to receive visitors. He worried about his wife and two children. How would they hold up? Would they be loved and supported through his ordeal?

        On September 19, he received his answer. The Knutson family opened the window and saw the street filled with Christian friends. After completely encircling the house, the people joined hands and prayed. They prayed for Mark. They prayed for his family. They prayed for grace and strength. They let the Knutson family know they were loved.

        Unlike so many modern displays of concern, their care didn’t end with one public display. For the next six weeks, groups from 2 to 20 would pray for Mark and his family in the corner of the yard. They kept a prayer register on the back porch so Mark could know who had been there without disturbing him. Some faithfully sent cards of concern and support while others helped with transportation and other needs of the Knutson’s children. The Knutson family said, “We truly felt a hedge of love encircling our home.”

        We cannot re–write the final chapter in Mark Knutson’s struggle with cancer. Life is real and none of us gets out alive. What matters most is that we love and are loved. We all need to know there is a hedge of love encircling our home. We all need to be part of that encircling hedge for someone else. Thankfully for the Knutson family, and their community, there was a group of people who demonstrated they belonged to Jesus.

        In a world of self-interest, there is still one distinguishing mark for a Christian. It isn't the sign in front of our church building, the bumper sticker on our car, the fish ring on our finger, or the crucifix we wear around our neck. Our real identity is demonstrated when we actively and consistenly love each other. Let’s make sure the proof of our discipleship is showing!


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