Romans 8:38-39 New International Version (NIV)
38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[a] neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

It was a cool December morning and the ice was perfect on the local pond. Rachel grabbed her ice skates. She had finished her chores as fast as she could. Now, the walk in the feather of snow with the sun glistening was luring her.

The local forestry workman had started a fire in the round rocks on shore. The flickering flames gravitated her to warm her hands there. Some of her neighbors were there already. Most of them were about the same age between 8 and 12 years old. They were already wet from melting snow on their legs.

Soon it would be Christmas, and they were all so excited about the plans that were made. Some were going to visit relatives out-of-town. Linda, her best friend was staying and decorating with lights. They had already planned a Christmas Caroling Party.

This tight friendship began at their church. They were part of the younger choir group. At school, they both were persecuted for their beliefs in Jesus. They would not go to the wild parties these kids would attend with teenagers using drugs. They would not date or sleep with boys as other girls did. So they were mocked.

Rachel and Linda started singing and skating in circle eights and left and right turns, enjoying the easy gliding. Rachel had taught Linda how to do some figure skating. What a contest they started amongst the group.

A loud cracking noise was heard throughout the whole pond. The ice had broken, and Linda had fallen into the icy water. Rachel rushed over to where Linda had last been seeing being very careful herself. Where was Linda? She had floated under the ice. Rachel could see her, but could not reach her.

There was no time. Rachel made a quick decision. She jumped into the freezing water and held onto the unbroken ice. She grabbed for Linda. Someone threw a rope to Rachel and she went under the ice. Rachel grabbed Linda. She brought her above water and tied her to the rope so she could be pulled out.

Linda was safe. Rachel however started sinking into the icy water. Her woolen clothing had soaked up so much water, and her hands were so frozen she could not hold onto the edged ice. She disappeared.

Many people were asking “Why, why Rachel?” Why did God let her die? Why did Rachel risk so much? Her Pastor was engulfed at the service with these questions.

Rachel risked her life for another whom she loved. Linda was her best friend. She read books with her, laughed and cried with her, and had planned a Christmas Caroling Party with her. Now, she was gone.

It is not really the why we should ask God, but for what purpose. He has a purpose in everything. Rachel knew Jesus as her personal savior. She knew Jesus had “risked” His life for her.

She knew He would always be with her. Jesus had taught her the real value of risk. Risk for life. His death on the cross was for eternal life. Her risk had enabled Linda her life.

The Christmas Caroling Party was still celebrated. The group met at Rachel’s parents home. There was a table full of yummy cookies, Rachel’s favorites. Each of the 20 children lit candles and sang, “Joy to the World” in her memory. They said a prayer together and as they walked down the sidewalk to town, the snow began to softly fall. They sang, “Silent Night”.

There is a poem I love written about this time of our lives. If you have not heard of it, please read it here: “The Dash Poem”

I ask myself everyday, “How much am I willing to risk for Jesus?”
I will admit some days I fall into a mess of me. Most days though, He grabs me with Joy in the morning! I stay there until I go to bed and thank Him for a beautiful day.

Are we willing to believe His Words in Romans 8:28-29? Many of us have memorized this and say it often. In reality do we really understand what it means? To risk our lives with Jesus includes so much. He tells us this in His Words.

Matthew 5:11-12 New International Version (NIV)
11 “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. 12 Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

Are you ready to take that risk?




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