Deep Pain


There never was such misery as mine,” said poor, sick Barbara as she tossed restlessly on the hospital bed. “I don’t think there ever was such pain!”

“Once,” was faintly whispered from the next bed.

Barbara paused for a minute, then in a still more impatient voice resumed her complaint: “Nobody knows what I feel. Nobody ever suffered more pain!”

“One,” was again whispered from the same direction.

“You mean yourself, poor thing, but―”

“Oh, not myself―not me!” exclaimed Lucie. She spoke so earnestly that her restless companion lay still for several seconds and stared at her.

“Oh, not myself―not me!” she repeated softly. There was a short pause and then the following words, spoken in the same low key, broke the midnight silence: “And when they had platted a crown of thorns, they put it upon His head, and a reed in His right hand: and they bowed the knee before Him, and mocked Him, saying, Hail, King of the Jews! And they spit upon Him, and took the reed, and smote Him on the head…. And when they were come unto a place called Golgotha… they gave Him vinegar to drink mingled with gall…. And they crucified Him…. And they that passed by reviled Him, wagging their heads…. And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying… My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?” (Matthew 27:29-46).

The voice ceased, and for several minutes not a word was spoken. The night nurse came in and refilled the pitchers of water by both beds.

“Thank you, nurse,” said Lucie. “They gave Him gall for His meat, and in His thirst they gave Him vinegar to drink!”

“She is talking about Jesus Christ,” said Barbara, already beginning to toss restlessly from side to side again. “But,” she added, “talking about His sufferings can’t help ours―at least not mine.”

“But it lightens hers,” said the nurse. “I wonder how?”


The gentle voice again took up the strain: “Surely He hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows…. He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed” (Isaiah 53:4-5).

“Healed! That’s a blessed word; I wish I was healed!”

Barbara was healed―healed in both body and soul. What the doctors and nurses with the Lord’s help accomplished for the healing of her body in the hospital, her quiet night talks with Lucie did for her soul. Before she was dismissed, well and strong again, Barbara was able to say with truth, “He was bruised for my iniquities: the chastisement of my peace was upon Him; and with His stripes I am healed”!

Adapted from He Giveth Life.

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She Couldn’t Pay

The New Heart
Emily Ortiz has a new heart. The headline in the paper told the whole story:


Emily was not insured for a heart transplant, and the $150,000 cost of the operation was far beyond her means. Family and friends were frantically trying to raise money to pay for the operation, but life was slipping away. It began to seem hopeless.

The price is high, but it will have to be paid.

Then the hospital received a donor heart that seemed a good match for her, and Emily was wheeled into the operating room, “just in time” her husband said, and her life was saved by the new heart.

Hospitals are expensive. Years of training for doctors, nurses, and technicians, costly equipment, and expensive drugs, all add up. No matter how generous and altruistic the doctors and hospital may be, the price must be paid.

For Emily, who could not pay, the bills are being paid by others. Every kind of fund-raiser is being used, and many contributions have been made. The price is high, but it will have to be paid.

For all of us, too, there was a price to be paid. We, too, had bad hearts. We, too, needed new hearts and a new life. And we, too, had nothing with which to pay. Just like Emily, we could not pay.

But Jesus could. Jesus did. He came to earth for that very purpose: to die for us, that we might have a new life, a God-given life, a life that will live forever in God’s house in heaven. “When we were yet without strength…Christ died for the ungodly” (Romans 5:6). He has paid all the price―that terrible price of death on the cross―and now all that we have to do is to receive it. “The gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 6:23).

Adapted from The Old Old Story.

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Facing Death

The Nurse’s Mistake
A young man lay in a hospital, racked with pain and impatient to be out again with his carefree friends. He had wanted to be an expert horseback rider and had fallen from his horse while riding. He had also decided that day to take a law course at the University, but now here he lay, and why, oh, why this pain in his leg?

Suddenly everything changed for him. A sober nurse quietly brought a folding screen into his ward and placed it carefully around his bed!

The screen! That meant he was expected to die…and soon! His world began to collapse around him. Horses and law courses were forgotten. He heard the hospital clock chime one. Perhaps before it chimed again he would be gone. Why hadn’t they told him before? He wasn’t ready to die. Perhaps before the hour was passed he would be face to face with God.

He hated the thought. Not that he had ever done anything that seemed very bad, but he just hadn’t got acquainted with God. He always figured there was plenty of time. Why had he kept at such a long distance from God?

His life began to pass before his eyes and he tried to see it as God would look at it. He shuddered. He hadn’t even kept the second commandment about loving his neighbor, let alone the first commandment about loving God with all his heart.

For the first time in his life he felt the crushing weight of his own sin, and groaned at the thought of meeting a holy God. Restlessly he tossed. His eyes roamed feverishly over the ceiling and walls. That ominous screen! The dread ticking of the clock near his bed!

Then the answer came. It was written on a little placard on the opposite wall. He could just see it above the screen:

“Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28). That was it! Jesus Christ, the Son of God somehow a fellow would be saved if he came to Him. Yes, the Cross! Christ had died, and in some way that meant pardon for sinners and rest for the soul.

“I’m so sorry,” she said, “there’s been a mistake…I am very sorry.” To her astonishment the patient sat bolt upright in bed and said… 

This time he didn’t stop to question it or argue it or put it off. He read the verse again: “Come unto Me, all ye that labor… and I will give you rest.”

Right out loud he said: “I will come! I do come! I come to Thee. Is it too late?”

The young man began smiling; he knew it wasn’t too late. He rested on the finished work of the Son of God, and he knew he was forgiven. He had never had such peace in his life. Now he was ready to die.

And yet, he wasn’t ready to die. He thought of his own brother and of his friends. Most of them cursed and scorned the name of God. Why hadn’t he come to Christ sooner while there was still time to tell them?

If he could only have one chance to shout this wonderful news from the housetops! He would give such a plea from a dying man that the whole world would wake up! If only…

Then the nurse came back.

“I’m so sorry,” she said, “there’s been a mistake. We placed the screen at the wrong bed. I am very sorry.”

To her astonishment the patient sat bolt upright in bed and said: “Sorry! Why, that’s the greatest thing that ever happened to me in my life!”

Have YOU come to Christ for salvation? There may not be this extra time given to you. “Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 6:2).

Are you telling others of Christ as though it were their last chance? Today may be your last chance or theirs.

Adapted from The Old Old Story.

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