Thursday, July 2, 2009

The Miracle in Sacrifice

On Sunday night two heroes were made and lost in my home town. I followed it on facebook, because one of them is the brother of one of my high school chums. While information was scarce, and conflicting, I was impressed with the amount of faith and concern that was expressed. I will admit that I come from a pretty great place, where people are generally nicer than expected, and everyone is connected somehow. But it was still inspiring to see how many people offered prayers, and contacted others to offer prayers.

The two men--Herm, and Nathan--were on a youth group outing on Pokegama Lake. The winds were high, and there were white caps. They noticed that some boys were out too far, Pokegama has some pretty sharp drop offs and with the wind this can make the lake dangerous. One of the boys didn't have a life jacket so they swam out to deliver a life jacket (but did not have one for themselves.) All the boys made it back to shore, but the two men disappeared in the water. They found Herm, who was taken to the hospital and pronounced dead. (This is the best article I've seen for more information.)

My friend's status on facebook asked for prayers for his family. Nathan was missing in the lake. The divers were looking, but had to stop because of the conditions. His body was found on Monday. He leaves behind his wife, and four children (the youngest 4 months old.) Nathan was a few years older than me, and I didn't know him well, but my sisters and I were friends with the younger Junkers.

While the miracle is not one of God's victory over the elements, there is a miracle in this story. Sacrifice is a miracle, it reminds of God's love for us, and Christ's role in our lives. Herm and Nathan gave their life to protect the boys they were responsible for, and while this must be little comfort to the families, I hope that they find what comfort they can in that fact. I know that my testimony for God's love for His children has been strengthened by the incident.

"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." (John 3:16)

If you are interested in contributing to a fund for Nathan's family you can find more information here.


Mindy said...

Nate was in my Spanish class in high school. I haven't seen him for over ten years, but it still breaks my heart to know he left behind his growing family.
Nate and Herm are hometown heroes huh?! I hope their families find strength at this time. I think both of their funerals are today.

Tammy Lorna said...

Oh Brecken - that's so sad! But it's always faith inspiring to read stories like that. Sad, but really moving.

If one has to go, I think it would be wonderful to be able to go doing service for someone else.

xo Tammy

charrette said...

I love tat line -- two heroes were made and lost. The whole story reminds me of those young men who died helping pioneers cross a freezing river. Beautiful sacrifice.

At Fathers and Sons last weekend, a toddler fell into the pond and no adults even noticed. Our little Jeremiah and his friend Emerson jumped in and pulled the little guy out (it was Emerson's brother). I'm grateful we have one of those heroes in our family...and grateful they all lived.