Romans 5:7-8 - For one will scarcely die for a righteous person -- though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die -- but God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
On January 1, 1968, the Federal Government's seat belt law went into effect. After that date all vehicles had to be equipped with seat belts. From 1968 to 1975 all the States in the Union adopted child car-seat laws, which were to help protect youngsters who were riding in vehicles.
The question for our Daily Devotioners is this: what protected children when they were in the car before car seats and safety belts? (Youngsters may want to visit with grandma or grandpa for the answer to this question.) The answer is whenever an accident or a fast stop seemed imminent, mother would stretch out her arm to hold the passengers and children securely in their seats.
A mother's arms are wonderful things, indeed. They are able to enfold a child who is hurting, or they can push a little one to safety. As proof, I share the story of Diane Aluska and her 16-year-old daughter Jenna.
This past Mother's Day the two were coming from Mass at Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Lindenhurst, New York. They left worship and stopped at a donut shop. As they exited the shop, Diane saw a Toyota Corolla racing toward them in reverse. At the wheel of that vehicle was an 80-year-old lady who had mistakenly put her car into reverse and stepped on the gas.
In far less time than it takes to tell, Diane pushed her girl out of the path of the car. The daughter received only a glancing blow from the Toyota, while the mother took the full force of the vehicle's momentum.
Both mom and daughter were taken to the same hospital. The daughter lived, while mom did not.
That story shows the power of a mother's love is both tragic and uplifting; it is sorrowful, beautiful, and inspirational. One could easily wonder if there is any form of love that might be equal to, or even better than, this mother's sacrifice.
While I personally stand in awe of Diane's sacrificial commitment, there is no question that, if she had had a choice, things would not have happened as they did. By that I mean, if Diane could have slowed down, or sped up their activities so the duo could have completely avoided that Toyota, she would gladly have done so.
In contrast, we see our Lord's divine love. We see Jesus who was born into this world for the purpose of fulfilling the Law and carrying our sins to the cross, where His life paid their price. Rather than running from His substitutionary death, Jesus embraced it so we might be saved.
We also need to remember Diane died for her own loving daughter. She might not have been similarly inclined to do the same for someone else's child. In contrast, the Bible reminds us that while "one will scarcely die for a righteous person -- though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die -- but God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us."
And that, my friend, is what love is all about.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, grant that I who have received such unearned love may reflect it to all those around me. May the lost and unloved be brought to see the greatness of Your saving grace. This I ask in my Redeemer's Name. Amen.
The above devotion was inspired by a number of sources, including one written By Daniel Prendergast, Kevin Sheehan, and Priscilla DeGregory for the New York Post on May 14, 2017. Those who wish to reference that article may do so at the following link, which was fully functional at the time this devotion was written. Please click here
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries
To Download Devotion MP3 to your computer, right click here and select "Save Link As" or "Save Target As" or "Download Linked File As"