James Harrison has a gift. At first glance, he’s an average 78-year-old Australian grandfather, but he’s credited with saving the lives of countless babies. In 1951, at the age of 14, Mr. Harrison had an operation to remove a lung. During the procedure, he received 13 units of blood. When he awoke and was told of the gift that he’d been given, he decided to become a blood donor himself as soon as he came of age.
Fast forward to 1967. A rare blood-born disease was claiming the lives of thousands of babies per year. This disease, called rhesus, causes the blood of the mother to attack the blood cells of the child in utero, resulting in brain damage or death for the baby. Because of Mr. Harrison’s history giving blood, it was discovered that he possessed a rare antibody, called Anti-D, which prevents the development of the harmful rhesus antibodies during pregnancy. Even more amazing is that Mr. Harrison is estimated to be one of only 50 people in Australia to possess this antibody.
The Australian Red Cross estimates that James Harrison’s blood has saved the lives of over two million babies. This from a man who says that he, “can’t stand the sight of blood and can’t stand pain.”
Over two thousand years ago, another person shed His blood for the lives of many. But instead of giving life to two million people, His blood saved the lives of countless billions. “This is My blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.” (Matthew 26:28) Yet, too often we (myself included) take His gift for granted. Mrs. White touched on this when she said, “The greatest gift that God could bestow upon men was bestowed in the gift of His beloved Son….[yet] we do not comprehend the value of the atonement! If we did, we would talk more about it. The gift of God in His beloved Son was the expression of an incomprehensible love. It was the utmost that God could do to preserve the honor of His law, and still save the transgressor.” (The Signs of the Times, December 30, 1889)
Like James Harrison, you’ve been given a gift. You have the ability, through Christ, to be instrumental in securing life eternal for each and every unsaved person you come into contact with every day. How many people is that? Tens? Hundreds?
My challenge to you (and myself) this week is to prayerfully ask God to open a door to talk to at least one person about Christ’s gift of salvation. There’s no gift more valuable, and no gift more important.