To this you were called… ~ 1 Peter 2:21


The story of the Titanic is the most famous sea disaster in modern history. Everything about the story seems unforgettable. It was the largest vessel in the world. It was the most luxurious. It was believed to be unsinkable. Nevertheless, on its maiden voyage in 1912, Titanic struck an iceberg and sank, taking over 1500 people to their deaths.

And not only has the sinking of the ship itself become famous. The experiences of many of its passengers have become famous too. There is, however, the story of one passenger that not many have heard.

John Harper was a widower. He was on his way to Chicago. With him was his only child, his six-year-old daughter. After Titanic struck the iceberg and it became clear that the ship was going to sink, John placed his daughter in a lifeboat and said goodbye, telling her she would see him again someday.

Many other fathers were saying similar things to their loved ones that terrible night. What’s distinctive about John Harper, however, is what he did with the time he had left. John Harper spent the time he had left telling others about Jesus.

Near the end, when Titanic had sunk and John was in the frigid water, he swam up to a man floating on some wreckage. John shared Jesus with him, but the man refused to believe. John then gave the man his lifejacket, telling him, “Here…you need this more than I do.” Soon after, John succumbed to the cold and sank beneath the waves.

According to the accounts, at least one man came to faith in Jesus that night, perhaps many more. The Holy Spirit accomplished this through the power of the gospel that John Harper courageously shared.

By God’s grace, John understood the treasure of forgiveness he had in his Savior. He understood that his calling as a Christian was to share that treasure with others. His mission was clear. Ours is too.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, give me clarity. Give me clarity as to why I am here. Give me clarity to spend my days as a living witness for you. Amen

Published by Living Hope Church

Living Hope is a WELS Lutheran Church located in Omaha, NE.