Matthew 14:14 (New International Version)
When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed their sick.
On September 11, 2001, Lt. Col. Brian Birdwell stepped into a Pentagon hallway when the fireball from the hijacked plane hit him. After recovering from the initial shock, Birdwell realized he was on fire. "Jesus, I'm coming to see you," he remembers praying.
When doctors finally attended to him at the Washington Burn Center, they found second- and third-degree burns over 40 percent of Birdwell's body. To save him, they performed several skin graft operations.
On September 13, while lying in his bed in the burn center, Laura Bush visited Brian's room and spoke to him for about a minute, all the time as if they were life-long acquaintances. She then turned to Brian's wife, Mel, who had been at the hospital for about two-and-a-half days. She was dirty, grimy, and wore a bloodstained shirt. Despite this, Laura gave her a long hug, as if she were a close family member. Laura then told them that there was "someone" there to see him.
The President walked in. Standing by Brian's bedside, the President told Colonel Birdwell that he was very proud of them both and regarded them as heroes. The President then saluted Brian. Brian slowly began to return the salute, taking about 15 to 20 seconds to get his hand up to his head because of his bandaged arms. During all of this, President Bush never moved. He dropped his salute only when Brian was finished with his.
Birdwell lives now with renewed purpose. "I'm a walking miracle. Christ got me out of the fire. In him not taking me, that means I have a mission to complete. He'll tell me what it is in due time."
Our Lord is a compassionate God, one who is with us in our most hurting times. He is one who knows our pain and one who can deliver us for a purpose.
Dear Lord we thank You for Your compassion towards us. We pray that we would always be faithful to You and compassionate to those You bring into our life. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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