I was at a gathering in Arlington, Texas on Tuesday and I had the opportunity to hear Cindy Winters share her story of triumphant faith in the face of tragedy. Fred Winters, her husband, was shot and killed by a lone gunman at his church in Marysville, Illinois. Cindy was on her way to a second service at the church when she saw the firetrucks and ambulances and knew that something had happened. To her horror she would learn that her husband had been fatally shot. Fred was a part of the Southern Baptist family of churches. He was an outstanding pastor doing a wonderful ministry. He was a greatly loved pastor and leader.
Instead of falling into depression and bitterness, Cindy Winters turned more deeply to her faith. She and her daughters held tightly to their belief that Fred was in heaven. They worked their way back to a joyful faith. Cindy said she had often heard people say in the face of unspeakable tragedy that Jesus was sufficient. She asserted in her closing remarks that come what may Jesus is enough for us. He is sufficient. I must say it was one of the most powerful testimonies I have heard in years. In a day when many say they no longer have faith because of the suffering and evil that is in the world, I saw and heard a woman who has taken a painful tragedy and turned it into an opportunity to magnify Christ. When tragedy comes, those most affected have a choice to make. They can either groan endlessly in their sorrow or glorify Christ. Cindy Winters has chosen the latter. In the words of Jesus, “Your joy no man can take away from you.” (John 16:22)