It’s difficult to find a news story that’s truly unique. But this one is, and it’s worth a moment’s meditation.
According to Reuter’s News Service (July 25, 2007), Chew Ten Hee, age 67, has offered to give up her freedom and go to jail. She is guilty of no offense and no one has suggested that she be incarcerated. But this lady is serious. She wants to go to jail.
Her reasons come straight from the heart of a mother. It seems her son was arrested in Singapore for robbery on July 6. He has been sent back to his homeland in Malaysia to await trial. Chew Ten Hee doesn’t know where her son is being held. But she knows her son is diabetic and if he doesn’t get his insulin three times a day he will die. Though the son is 41, she’s still his mother and she’s willing to go to jail if it will ensure that he gets the help he must have.
Have you ever heard such a story?
Actually we have. It sounds remarkably like another item in the news 2,000 years ago. Paul reported it in these words: “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross” (Philippians 2:5-8, NKJV).
Roughly translated, that means Jesus gave up his freedom in heaven to be confined in a body of flesh for several years. No one could force him to do it; he did it voluntarily. Why? Because of the desperate needs his people faced. Without him, they were under a death sentence. To stand by and do nothing was not an option. He willingly gave up his freedom to be by their side.
I don’t know what has happened to Chew Ten Hee’s son. I hope his mother’s actions will help get him the medications he needs. But I know the outcome for all who allow Jesus to come into their lives and to stand with them. It’s a very good outcome.
“Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. You are my friends if you do whatsoever I command you” (John 15:13,14).
The only thing greater than a mother’s love …