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Daily Devotions

But God, who is rich in mercy, out of the great love with which he loved us 5even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved...

 

There is a delightful story about Gen. Douglas MacArthur, the military hero.

MacArthur was highly thought of in Washington and was regarded as a leader. However, he also had a reputation for being a cold fish personally. So his Public Relations people came up with an idea. They would have him review a contingent of veterans. In the middle of the review they would have him suddenly recognize an enlisted man who had served under him during the war.

"It will be a tremendously moving and human moment," the advisers said to MacArthur. "Out of hundreds of men lined up for your inspection, you will suddenly pick out a single individual, call him by name and recall past campaigns." MacArthur agreed to go along with the plan.

So they set up the inspection and chose their veteran. The lucky soldier would be unaware that he'd been singled out for the honor. They went through the Army records, found out everything about the fellow and figured out precisely where he would be standing when MacArthur marched through the ranks. To be on the safe side, they arranged for an aide to nudge MacArthur discreetly when he was directly in front of the proper soldier.

It all went off like clockwork. MacArthur saluted the veterans, the veterans saluted MacArthur. The general began his march along the lines of soldiers. At the right moment, the aide gave MacArthur the nudge.

MacArthur halted. He turned and looked at the man standing stiffly at attention in front of him. "Jones!" he boomed. "We were together on Corregidor. You are Corporal Jones. I remember you."

Jones looked startled for a moment. Then he peered at the general with a puzzled expression. Finally, he blurted out somewhat quizzically: "MacArthur?"

General MacArthur got his bubble burst that day.

We live in a lonely world. So much that is counted as love is artificial. It sometimes seems that we don't really count for much. But there is one place where most of us still are somebody. That is at home. At home we are not simply a number. We are a valued member of the family. So it is with God. With God we are more than a number--more than a face in the crowd. God loves us with a very personal love. Even the very hair of our head is counted.

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