March 23, 1945, changed 19-year-old Donald Morrison’s life—and his eternal life—forever.

Just as his commanding officers yelled for their division to get down, the young American soldier was hit by shrapnel from a German artillery shell. His fellow soldiers, seeing the damage to Morrison’s body, presumed their friend to be dead and went on without him.

But God knew better.

Morrison, who only attended church occasionally and would not have called himself a “religious” man, had carried a small, pocket-sized Bible with him into combat. That Bible, which sat quietly in the chest pocket of his uniform, blocked the shrapnel from piercing his heart. Without it, Morrison would have died.

When he later regained consciousness and caught up with his division, the medical team found the shrapnel lodged in the New Testament directly over 1 Corinthians 15:10:

“But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me was not in vain.”

“I am blessed to be alive,” said Morrison, now a 91-year-old resident of Buckner Villas in Austin. “After the accident, I knew there had to be a God. That Bible holds a special place in my heart, and every time I look at it I am reminded how lucky I am.”

Few can say they’ve had an encounter as dramatic as Morrison’s, but the eternal significance of God’s word on our lives is no less important. Just like Morrison’s Bible saved him from a fatal wound, the truth of God’s word saves us from an eternity away from him. It protects us.

Paul says in Romans 1:16, “I am not ashamed of the Gospel, for it is the power of God for the salvation of all who believe.”

Morrison’s life was never the same after encountering God’s grace in such a real way, and neither should ours be. This week, think about your life before you knew Christ and your life now. How are you living differently because of God’s grace toward you?

“I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life.” John 5:24

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