My favorite find for this week comes from my friend Connie Sokol’s book 40 Days with Christ.
DAY 8: HE SACRIFICED FOR OTHERS
Luke 22:42, 44 [He said], Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine be done. And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.
In a way incomprehensible to us, the Savior suffered the sins of everyone who has ever lived. But even more amazing, He could have chosen to vicariously feel our pains from a distance and remain only a kind friend or compassionate neighbor. Instead, He actually felt our same feelings, experienced our same pains, and walked our same path. This perfectly pure and clean Son of God chose to completely get down on our level. Why? So he could best know how to succor us. So He could know fully and completely know how to take away the pain. The Savior sacrificed everything—His personal desires, His comforts, even His will—so that we might have ultimate happiness. He gave us the possibility of a clean slate after each mistake, to let it go and be better next time. He loves us fully and completely, no matter our spiritual state, and only wants us to be happy and to be like Him. Jesus teaches us a core principle: sacrifice is a gift of joy. He suffered so that we don’t have to. When we’re sad, angry, or overwhelmed with the wrongness of our choices, we don’t have to stay that way. He already bore those burdens. And because of this, we can be happier. As we meet others, we can pay it forward and follow His example by sacrificing our time and abilities to share others’ burdens and lighten their load. How can you sacrifice for someone today?