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A good many years ago, during a Massachusetts winter, a brother and sister were walking on the ice. He was 9 and she was 11. They hit a thin patch and fell through. Kicking to the surface, they yelled for help.

Summoned by their screams, a man came running, dived into the icy water and tried to help them both. Seeing his difficulty, the nine year old boy shouted: "Never mind me, save Annette." That’s what happened. The man saved Annette. The boy died.

I’ve often wondered, why did the boy call, "Never mind me, save Annette." Was it a rational decision? Did he debate the matter? There was no time. That 9-year-old boy was a Christian. It was just who he was. From home, from church, from parents he had learned to have Jesus as his authority. He simply imitated Jesus.

(Illustration from The Lutheran Hour Mark 1 2003. From a sermon by Clarence Eisberg, "The Cosmic Battle for Authority" 1/29/2009)

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