Give Of Oneself
A story has circulated among preachers about a young boy whose little sister had a rare disease that would cause her to die unless she was given a blood transfusion from a matching member of the family. After samples were taken from each member of the family it was determined that the boy’s blood was a match. The doctor then sat the seven-year-old boy down and explained how the blood from his body would be transferred from him into his little sister’s arm. Out of love for his little sister the boy repeatedly nodded in agreement. The day came when the boy found himself in an adjacent bed to that of his sister, their hands touching while the blood was drawn and transfused. After a while, as blood was still being drawn, this brave little soul turned to one of the medical staff and asked, “Am I nearly dead yet?” To everyone’s surprise the boy had not confided this fear to anymore before. He had mistakenly thought that the giving of his blood for her life would be the end of his. Yet he was willing to do it. The medical staff chuckled at first, but the lightheartedness soon turned to sober reflection in the face of such sacrificial love.
The giving of oneself is indeed a noble thing, an admirable trait, and most of all a Christian act. Christians above all, ought to be the type of people who pour themselves out and into others for their greater good. The Christian understands best that you make a living by what you get, but you make a life by what you give. And they know this because such selflessness and sacrifice marked the life of the Lord Jesus. In life, Christ was constantly giving of Himself. In Mark 5:30 we read of a loss of strength and energy on the part of Jesus in the healing of the woman hemorrhaging blood. Mark tells us “power had gone out of Him.” In this comment, we see that every time Jesus healed anyone, it took something out of Him. Their gain came at a loss to Christ; to help others He had to give of Himself. He became less that they might become more. In fact, this pattern of giving Himself for others would find its greatest expression on the Cross, where He would pour out His soul unto sorrowful death, in an act of substitutionary atonement on behalf of sinners (Isa. 53:12; Mark 10:45).
Listen! What we are being taught is that to be all in with God requires being all out for people. The God who poured Himself out for us in Christ asks us to pour out our lives for a broken world in need of His healing. Remember how Moses in a moment of selflessness begged God to blot him out the book of remembrance if only the people might be forgiven (Ex. 33:30-32)! Remember how Paul in a moment of similar selflessness wished he could be cursed for the sake and salvation of his fellow Israelites (Rom. 9:1-3)! The fact is that a broken world will never be made whole if we are not willing to pour ourselves out in selfless acts, patient love, sacrificial giving, second mile mercy, and undeserving forgiveness. Calvary love means you are willing to die to self, or more, so that a sick world might experience a life-giving transfusion of God’s love for them in Christ. Remember this: as you pour yourself out for others God will pour His grace into you (Phil. 2:17; 4:13). As you put out God will put in!