It happened in the 16th century in the Netherlands where Dirk Willems had been labeled an "Anabaptist" during the rule of the Spanish Catholics and was imprisoned for his faith. NOW, HE WAS RUNNING FOR HIS LIFE. He had escaped out the tiny window in his cell and lowered himself on a rope made of old rags. Landing on a frozen pond alongside the prison wall, he stepped lightly onto the ice, wondering if he would fall through. But the months of starvation he had endured in prison now served him well. He barely weighed a hundred pounds.
Before reaching the other side of the pond, a scream broke the night's silence. "HALT, IMMEDIATELY" yelled the guard as he was coming out the same window that Dirk had climbed through moments before. Dirk was too close to freedom. He kept going. The guard yelled again as he set foot on the ice. He began to chase Dirk...but on his third step, there was a loud crack, a splash, as the guard fell through the ice. His screams turned to shrieks of cold and terror: "Help me, PLEASE! Help! HELP ME!"
Dirk paused, looking toward freedom. THEN he turned and quickly made his way back to the prison pond. He lay on his stomach and stretched his arms to rescue the nearly frozen guard. In sarcastic attitude...the guard grabbed Dirk and forced him back to his prison cell.
Despite being a hero...Dirk was burned at the stake because of his faith! WHY? Committed Christians don't live according to common sense, they do the unthinkable, they do the impossible because they live according to a higher calling! To what are you committed?
"For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain" (Philippians 1:21).