Thursday, December 13, 2007

"We do this for Jesus, right?"

The last words of Tiffany Johnson are ringing in my ears.

Tiffany, the 26-year-old who was killed in Denver by a gunman who hated Christians and YWAM.

Tiffany, who like all of us, has a story that makes the grace of Christ even sweeter.

Tiffany, who died serving.

Peter Warren, director of YWAM-Denver, recounted those final words to the Denver Post: "Warren then got choked up, standing over the spot in a rear hallway where Johnson and Crouse were shot. He pulled a napkin from his pocket - on it were words Johnson spoke to another student when she regained consciousness briefly after being shot. The words she said were: 'We do this for Jesus, right? We do this for Jesus.'"

We do this for Jesus. Tiffany's words are a reminder to all of us that as much as we love the people we serve, we don't do it for them. Good thing - otherwise a little thing like a critical spirit or a big thing like a gun would deter us. We do this for Jesus. For His glory, His honor, His fame. "To know Him and make Him known."

I'm oddly encouraged by the "right?" in the first part of her comment. She seems to seek reassurance, then provides it herself. Like Tevya in "Fiddler on the Roof" she asks "Right?" then answers in a way, "Of course right!"

We do this for Jesus. As far as anyone knows, those were her last words on this earth ... words spoken after being shot. What would my words be in such a setting? Knowing me, they would be inquisitive ("What happened? Who's that?") or practical ("Turn off the oven before the ambulance gets here"). Hopefully they would honor God in some way. But my heart of hearts longs to so internalize the message of service and love that Tiffany Johnson embodied that my last words would be a reminder to those around me that even in suffering, "We do this for Jesus."

Please pray for me in this ... as I will also pray for you! Together, "we do this for Jesus."

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