…so that we who live should not live for ourselves…”
- 2 Corinthians 5:15
The year was 1910. Times were tough and money was hard to come by. The most reliable means of communication was the telegraph, but it wasn’t cheap, you paid for every word sent. At this time, General Booth (the founder of Salvation Army) was old and frail and could not attend their annual meeting. He was encouraged to send a message that would be read at the convention. A message that would convey the heart, mission and vision of the Army. “Knowing that funds were limited and desiring not to use any more money than necessary so that as much money as possible could be used to help the many people in need, General Booth decided to send a one-word message. He searched his mind and reviewed his years of ministry, looking for the one word that would summarize his life...” Not an easy task for a lonely word. The only word he could think of was: OTHERS! Yet the task was accomplished, as OTHERS became the Army’s focus, OTHERS became their reason and OTHERS became their purpose.
Last Christmas, I told my children I wanted us to do Christmas a little bit differently. I suggested, instead of buying gifts for each other, we should instead buy and send gifts to OTHERS. I was amazed at my children’s response. They suggested we give to an orphanage. As a parent, I was overjoyed -they are getting it! Just last week, my daughter returned from her school with a letter about “Thanksgiving” at their school. This year, their school has decided to collect food items to take to an orphanage. I was again, overjoyed. My daughter and I decided on a grocery shopping date for their school’s “Thanksgiving”. At the end of our exercise, my daughter came up to me, gave me a big hug and said, “Daddy, you know what?” I said, “What?” With a smile of satisfaction on her face, she said, “Daddy, I love sharing.” The song writer underscored the lesson in this lyrics:
Lord, let me live from day to day,
In such a self-forgetful way,
That even when I kneel to pray,
My prayer shall be for OTHERS.
OTHERS, Lord, yes, OTHERS;
Let this my motto be.
Help me to live for OTHERS
That I may live like Thee.
“OTHERS”, is, I believe the message of Christmas. Jesus came for OTHERS. Jesus lived for OTHERS. Jesus died for OTHERS and Jesus lives for others. We live for Him by living for OTHERS! May we live for OTHERS as we celebrate Christmas this year!
For Him, for OTHERS,
For Him, for OTHERS,