One late autumn, there were three little children who wandered alone in a gloomy region of New
Brunswick. The sun had already set and evening was spreading itself over the surrounding country.
The night came on fast. The eldest girl, who is only 6 years old, felt sure that they could not get home before morning. So Mary quietly placed the two little ones, Johnny and Lizzie, in a sheltered corner on the sea-beach; and fearing that the younger children would get cold that night, she took off most of her own clothes to keep them warm.
Afterwards, she set off to gather dry sea-weed, and anything else she could find to cover them with. After having tenderly made for them a nest, she at last fell down exhausted, half bare in the cold, chilly night.
That evening, the loving father and tender mother sat up wondering where their children have gone. The hours dragged slowly with anxious watching and silent listening for the long-familiar little pattering feet. But the fond parents waited in vain.
Finally, they woke up the neighbors with their anxious questions about their lost ones. All that night passed in searching and in tears. Until early in the morning, they found little Johnny and Lizzie lying fast asleep and somewhat numbed with cold.
But oh! a touching sight lay near them. Their young savior was stiff, cold, and dead on the sea-weed she is trying to pull into the nook where they were sleeping. The poor little child-heroine died to save those she so deeply loved. Thus, this small New Brunswick girl died in her successful and self-sacrificing effort to save her brother and sister.
Does not this remind us the love of the Lord Jesus Christ to us? Mary went to the full extent of human love in dying for her little brother and sister. "Greater love has no one than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." Even so, the Lord Jesus laid down his life for his enemies; for "hardly for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man some would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."
Behold what manner of love Jesus has for us. Yet how many listen to this story with more emotion and interest than they do to the story of the cross, where the love of Jesus, the Son of God, is told in letters of blood!
MEMORY VERSE: John 15:13
Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.
KIDS CRAFT: How to make an origami heart
Use colored or patterned paper in this project. After making the origami heart, ask the children to write a personal thank you letter to Jesus for His great love for them and slip it into the side pocket or just glue it to the heart. An alternative is to put a photo of the child and write "Jesus loves me."