I attend a men’s Bible study on Thursday mornings with a great group of Christian men.
One of the men in our group, Hugh Jones, is a retired banking executive who has a huge heart for God and people. Hugh was recently featured in an article in the Jacksonville Times Union.
In 1986 Hugh organized a group–including doctors–to go to South Korea to help sick children. While in a hospital in South Korea Hugh noticed a woman holding a baby who was completely blue. One of the doctors on the trip was horrified. He said, “If this baby was in the United States I would have him in surgery immediately.” Without treatment the doctor knew the baby would live no more than six months.
A South Korean doctor told the baby’s mother that there was nothing they could do so she should just take the baby home. He also gave her one more piece of advice, “Don’t love him.”
The baby’s name was Kang Joon Ku.
Kang, then 11 months old, was suffering from a life-threatening congenital heart condition that required immediate surgery.
After the doctor examined him in 1986, Kang and his mother were flown to Jacksonville. On April 21 that year, Miller performed a cardiac catheterization procedure at University Hospital, now Shands Jacksonville. The next day a pediatric cardiovascular surgeon performed open heart surgery on Kang.
He made a full recovery and returned to Korea a month later.
Kang was one of 71 children treated in Jacksonville between 1985 and 1995 as part of the Korean Heart program, founded by Hugh.
A couple of weeks ago, Kang, now 22 years old, visited Jacksonville to personally thank the people who saved his life. Hugh said it was an amazing experience.
This morning, as I listened to Hugh shared this story with us, I kept thinking about what that South Korean doctor said to Kang’s mother.
“Don’t love him.”
I’m so grateful that Kang’s mother–and Hugh–didn’t take that doctor’s horrible advice.
“Don’t love him.”
What a terrible thing for a doctor to say.
As I reflected on that advice it dawned on me that Satan–if given the same chance–would have given Jesus the same advice about us.
Can’t you picture the scene?
Jesus holding our wounded soul in his arms with Satan looking on.
All seemed hopeless.
We were fatally wounded by the consequences of our sin.
We were weak and spiritually sick.
It seemed as if we were doomed.
Satan–assessing the situation–advises Jesus, “Don’t love him.” “Don’t love her.”
But–praise God–Jesus didn’t take Satan’s advice! Praise God that he healed us and gave us a chance for new life!
So, following Kang’s example, I return to God this morning with a prayer of gratitude:
“Lord, thank you for loving me. Thank you for saving my life. I’d have no hope without you. I wouldn’t be here without you. I love you, so much, and I commit my life to making sure that lost people know that you love them, too. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”