This is a powerful True Story coming out of World War 1 of the deep friendship of two soldiers in the trenches. Two buddies were serving together in the mud and misery of that wretched European stalemate. Month after month they lived out their lives in the trenches, in the cold and the mud, under fire and under orders.
From time to time one side or another would rise up out of the trenches, fling their bodies against the opposing line and slink back to lick their wounds, bury their dead, and wait to do it all over again. In the process, friendships were forged in the misery. Two soldiers became particularly close. Day after day, night after night, terror after terror, they talked of life, of families, of hopes, of what they would do when (and if ) they returned from this horror.
On one more fruitless charge, “Jim” fell, severely wounded. His friend, “Bill”, made it back to the relative safety of the trenches. Meanwhile Jim lay suffering beneath the night flares. Between the trenches. Alone. The shelling continued. The danger was at its peak. Between the trenches was no place to be. Still, Bill wished to reach his friend, to comfort him, to offer what encouragement only friends can offer. The officer in charge refused to let Bill leave the trench. It was simply too dangerous. As he turned his back, however, Bill went over the top. Ignoring the smell of cordite in the air, the concussion of incoming rounds, and the pounding in his chest, Bill made it to Jim.
Sometime later he managed to get Jim back to the safety of the trenches. Too late. His friend was gone. The somewhat self-righteous officer, seeing Jim’s body, cynically asked Bill if it had been “worth the risk.” Bill’s response was without hesitation. “Yes, sir, it was”, he said. “My friend’s last words made it more than worth it: he looked up at me and said, ‘I knew you’d come’.”
By Stu Weber, from Locking Arms.
Romans 5:7-8 Not very often will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man maybe someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates His own Love for us in this when we were still sinners, Christ Jesus died for us.