McDowell Technical Community College

Morganton Seventh-Day Adventist Church

Ultimate Love

By Rick and Cindy Mercer

Burke County

 

We have all heard stories that came out of the 911 tragedy.  The following story begins with a man named Stanley who sat on the eighty-first floor of the South Tower of the World Trade Center.  Suddenly the nose of a 767 jet filled the sky outside his window.  He dropped the phone and dove under his desk.  Steel shrieked against steel as the ceiling crashed down.  Electrical wires sparked.  Desks and filing cabinets hurtled across the room. And then Stanley started sobbing and then praying.

As many of us watched the dreadful fate that day, news reporters flashed scenes over and over again— the thousands of people fleeing the building that day.  Horribly burned and profusely bleeding, they stumbled down darkened staircases.

Another man named Brian was running down from the eighty-fourth floor when he heard cries for help.  It was Stanley, who had somehow managed to crawl through the rubble but was now trapped under a fallen wall.

Hijacked United Airlines Flight 175 from Boston crashes into the south tower of the World Trade Center and explodes at 9:03 a.m. on September 11, 2001 in New York City. The crash of two airliners hijacked by terrorists loyal to al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and subsequent collapse of the twin towers killed some 2,800 people. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)alexplosionbestof2001attacknycattackterroristusattackQaeda

Brian pulled away charred debris and shattered doors.  Finally, he reached the desperate man.  “You have got to make it through the wall,” he yelled.  “I can’t,” Stanley replied.  “You have to do this,” Brian shouted back.  Stanley clawed his way until he was partly free, and Brian pulled him from the rubble.  The two strangers hugged like brothers.  When they finally got outside, with tears in his eyes Stanley looked at Brian and said, “Keep in touch because I owe you my life.”

Does this bring to mind the amazing love that saved you and me?  When we ponder on that, our heart should also cry out, “Lord, I want to keep in touch, because I owe you my life.”  The essence of the Christian life is fellowship with God.  When two people are in love, they long to be together.  Separation is painful.  When we fully sense Jesus’ love and commitment in saving us, our hearts respond in love.  We long to be with Him.  We want to spend time with Him in fellowship.  We don’t want to be separated from His love for an instant!  In one of my favorite books Steps to Christ we are told that “The price paid for our redemption, the infinite sacrifice of our heavenly Father in giving His Son to die for us, should give us exalted conceptions of what we may become through Christ.”  And then the inspiration of scripture reminds us ‘Behold what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God.’ 1 John 3:1.  This places great value upon man!

Friends, God values us highly.  He loves us immensely.  He longs to be with us intensely.  His love breaks our hard hearts and draws us to Him.  Through Calvary, we owe Him our lives.  The least we can do is give back to Him the lives He redeemed and gave to us.

That is the ultimate example of love!