Articles by Stan Dean

Major Decisions

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According to an article in Time Magazine, “Every day we face thousands of decisions both major and minor.” With that thought in mind, let me tell you about a man I once read about who had to make one of the toughest decisions imaginable.

His name was John Griffith. In 1929 he lived in Oklahoma until he lost everything he had in the stock market crash which resulted in him moving to Mississippi. His occupation there was operating a lift bridge for boats to pass under a railroad trestle.

The job was not particularly demanding- - until one fateful day in 1937. On that day his eight-year-old son, Greg, had accompanied him to work. It had been a pretty light morning and Greg had played around the office. The toughest part for John was having to answer a never ending string of questions from his son.

However, things took a strong turn when a ship came through and John opened the drawbridge. He was focusing on his task until suddenly he realized that he had not heard from Greg for a while and he was nowhere to be found. He ran outside and to his dismay saw him climbing on the gears of the drawbridge. Just as he started to run to him he heard the whistle of the fast approaching Memphis Express train which was loaded with 400 passengers.

He knew that there was not enough time to reach his son before the train arrived. Also, because of the noise he could not make his son hear his voice to warn him. Thus, his decision was between rescuing his son, which would mean the wreck and death of 400 passengers, and lowering the bridge which would mean sacrificing his son. What a dilemma for any parent! John made the decision that he would relive the rest of his life- - he pulled the lever and closed the bridge.

There is only one other decision that surpasses that one. It is the one the Heavenly Father made between saving His Son and letting Him die so that you and I could be saved (cf. Matthew 26:39). You and I know the decision He made (Romans 5:8). Now the question is: “Will you and I make the greatest decision of our lives to accept his Sacrifice by turning our hearts and lives to Him?”


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