Have you ever thought of what you might do if you were faced with the need to risk your life for someone else? A while back, Wesley Autrey, a 50 year old construction worker saw another man collapse on the subway platform…and then down onto the tracks. There was no time to pull the man from the tracks, so Mr. Autrey leapt down and lay on the man, pressing him down in a space roughly a foot deep. The train could not stop, and after five cars had rolled over them, Mr. Autrey yelled, “We’re O.K. down here…” Afterward, Mr. Autrey said, “I don’t feel like I did something spectacular; I just saw someone who needed help. I did what I felt was right.”
The Bible teaches us to feel this way. Paul wrote, “Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.” (Philippians 2:3-4 ESV) We can be heroes without doing something as daring as Mr. Autrey did.
We can be heroes by putting the physical needs of others before our own. This idea is shown in Matthew 25 where Jesus said that our willingness to serve others will, in part, determine our eternal destination. We can be heroes by putting the emotional needs of others before our own. When Paul the apostle was trying to begin serving God, other Christians would not receive him for fear of his former persecution of the church. But Barnabas took him before the brethren and stood up for him. You never know what great benefits will come from helping to encourage others. Lord willing, my next article will continue these thoughts.