A lesson in humility
A near-death experience gives new meaning to God's grace.
I read a terrifying story of a 20 year old guy who had a near-death experience whilst driving.
In his car was a 16 year old girl called Shannon, She had her feet up on the dashboard painting her toenails, as they drove 100 MPH down an icy Minnesota road.
He said, “In an instant, I felt a sense that I had lost control. I don’t know what happened. The next few seconds are gone from my memory. I probably hit some ice or a pothole and lost control of the car. The next thing I remember, I was upside down, the roof crushed. I squeezed out of the shattered window, and looked at the car. It was flipped, headlights beaming into darkness, taillights glowing red against the ice of the Minnesota River.”
That’s right – they landed up-ended on a FROZEN RIVER. He then pulled Shannon out of the crushed metal cab past broken glass.
“We couldn’t find her shoes, so there she stood on the ice, bare feet, so I took off my shoes and gave them to Shannon. We left the car upside down on the ice, and climbed the 30-foot embankment back to the road."
"I never recalled the actual accident itself, even in the moment immediately after the crash. I know neither of us had seat belts on. When we got back to safety, Shannon’s mom picked her up. I expected anger, screaming, hatred, maybe even violence against me. But I’ll never forget her mother’s reaction when she saw me, because it surprised me: she hugged me and kissed me with tears in her eyes, and said, “I’m so grateful you two are okay.”
Afterwards he tried to think up reasons why the accident happened - God was teaching him a lesson, this was a needed a wake-up call etc. But in the end, he came to a different conclusion.
"The fact is, I don’t know what happened or why we lived. But I do know that the ice wouldn’t have been there if it hadn’t been -20 degrees for the whole week before. So today, when it gets that cold, I don’t complain. I thank God for it.”
When you’ve been given such an amazing fresh start – not just with your life, but with your whole eternity, there’s a right response - Humble Heart, Grattitude, accepting that you’ve been blessed beyond what you’ve offered or achieved yourself.
The apostle Paul based his faith on humble foundations, and names God’s love as His MOST PRECIOUS gift – above others:
"I became a servant of this gospel by the gift of God's grace given me through the working of his power. Although I am less than the least of all God's people, this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ..." (Ephesians 3:7-8)
Paul realised he is loved generously... so are you.
We can only admit how loved we are by God when we open our hearts to his love, and drink it in. This will be despite the risks we feel in trusting him, and will be against our own independent habits.
You're really blessed when you offer a humble heart - because God can lift you up from there.