December 14, 2008
I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. Galatians 2: 20
It was a fair number of years ago, on a Massachusetts lake, a brother and sister fell through the ice.
A stranger heard their shouts and came running. He jumped into the large hole of open water to save them. When he got up to them, the 9-year-old boy said, "Never mind me, save Annette." Annette was his 11-year-old sister.
The man grabbed the sister, got her out of the water and on to the shore. By the time he returned to the freezing water, the boy was gone.
I'd like you to think about the boy and what he said. "Never mind me, save Annette."
In that cold water, as he was freezing, perhaps dying, those words weren't an intellectual decision. They were not birthed by a careful weighing of the pros and cons.
"Never mind me, save Annette."
That's not a normal thing for anybody to say. The sensible thing to do is to make sure you're all right. When you're safe you can start thinking about saving someone else.
I think that boy acted the way he did because he couldn't do anything else. Somewhere, somehow, somebody had touched him with the idea of sacrificial love. It may have been parents or a pastor or a sermon or a Sunday School teacher. I don't know what touched him, but somebody did. That's why, in a desperate moment, it was natural for him to say, 'Never mind me, save Annette.'
You know, when I look at Jesus in His Bethlehem manger, I am confronted by the fact His entire life was spent saying, "Never mind Me, save humanity." Because Jesus did that, we, like St. Paul, live by faith in the Son of God Who loved us and gave Himself for us.
As a Baby, as a Friend, as a Sacrifice, Jesus gave Himself for our salvation. Why such a noble act? Two reasons: He loves us, and that's who He is.
From a devotion originally written for "By the Way"
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord Jesus, for a life of service, sacrifice, and suffering, I stand in awe. For my salvation, I praise Your Name. I give thanks that You are Who You are. In Your Name. Amen.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries