This is that wonderful time of year when we observe the birth of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior. He was the ultimate gift of love: “God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son … (John 3:16 NIV).”
Here’s a story to illustrate that love, the love we celebrate at Christmas. Some months ago we wrote about Elizabeth Joice who refused cancer treatments to save the life of her baby, and in the process succumbed to the deadly disease. Now a similar story has come out of China.
Recently, my son Nathan sent me a link to an article about a young Chinese mother named Qiu Yuanyuan. Qiu was a TV host in Zhengzhou, China. She became pregnant in March and then was diagnosed with advanced cancer of the womb. The doctors told her she needed to begin chemotherapy to save her life. But this medical treatment would mean the loss of her baby’s life.
What should a mother do, sacrifice herself or her baby? Qiu made the choice to sacrifice her own life to save her baby. She refused the chemotherapy. By the time her baby, Niannian, was born in September it was too late for the medical treatment to save her. She died December 10. Qiu literally gave her life to save her child.
As I read this story, the realization flooded over me that this is what Christmas is all about. Jesus Christ, the Savior of mankind, was born to sacrifice his own life to save yours and mine. What kind of love is this? This is why we celebrate Christ’s birth.
Thank you, Qiu! You gave your child life and reminded all who will hear what Christmas is all about.
Joy to the world, the Lord has come!
– Darrow Miller