The ultimate safety net

by Tom Eggebrecht

Any grandparent will tell you that one of the great joys in life is babysitting grandchildren. I’ve recently been given the happy responsibility of watching our nearly one-year-old grandson, Crosby, on a few occasions. The boy is a bundle of energy. The only time he stops moving is when he sleeps. He’s constantly on the go. And he has no fear. He has no clue that danger is all around.

Crosby will dive face first off of a sofa. He will climb up stairs without realizing the danger he could face if no one were there to catch him going backwards. There are sharp corners and edges all around. A little kid who doesn’t yet have bearings and balance could easily find himself with a split forehead or a bloody chin. When I’m with him I can’t turn away or leave him for more than a few seconds. Countless times I have caught him, defended him and kept him from harm.

The other night, as I was watching Crosby’s mother follow after him, I had a little realization. I wonder if God looks at me in the same way? He most certainly must be able to see the danger that lurks around my every corner. My Heavenly Father sees the collision course down the road ahead of me. I’m certain that He has timed things just right so that an accident is avoided, my bike stays upright or an encounter is missed.

I love Crosby so much that I would do my absolute best to guard him from any kind of misfortune. I would dive, get hurt or even sacrifice myself before ever seeing him succumb to danger. But even I can’t protect him from everything. No human being could.

But there is One who provides ultimate protection. Our Heavenly Father sent His Son to protect me from evil enemies. They are the ones that could hurt me or Crosby far worse than a jagged corner, a car or even a gun could. Christ dove into this world of sin, got hurt by wicked people and the Evil One, and sacrificed Himself on a cross to take on my spiritual punishment. More than that, He made me His own through our baptisms into the death and resurrection of Jesus.

It reminds me of the old hymn, “I Walk in Danger All the Way” (LSB 716). One stanza says this:

I walk with Jesus all the way,
His guidance never fails me;
Within his wounds I find a stay
When Satan’s power assails me;
And by his footsteps led,
My path I safely tread.
No evil leads my soul astray;
I walk with Jesus all the way.

I’m so glad Crosby doesn’t just have to rely on my protection — or even that of his parents. He has far greater protection than I could ever give. It’s the ultimate spiritual safety net given to all of us by a loving God who forgives sins and gives the gift of eternal life through Jesus.

The Rev. Tom Eggebrecht is senior pastor of Ascension Lutheran Church, Casselberry, Fla. Follow his blog at www.tomeggebrecht.com.

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