Blood was the only hope

“…by his wounds we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5).

Susanna Petroysan and her 4-year old daughter lived in soviet Armenia. They went to visit a relative in an apartment building on December 7, 1988.

After they arrived, the country was struck with a massive earthquake. They were on the fifth floor and there was no time to escape. They fell through the floor and down into the basement.

It was a 9-story building, so other people and debris fell all around them.

They were trapped, but fortunately alive.

Hours turned into days. “Mommy, I need a drink, please. I’m so thirsty.” Susanna was able to find a jar of blackberry jam. She gave it all to her daughter.

Time marched on. “Mommy, I’m so thirsty.” By this time, Susanna was going in and out of consciousness. But she remembered a TV documentary about an arctic explorer who had cut their own hand to provide for a starving friend. 

Susanna’s hands were numb and in pain. She took a piece of broken glass and cut her hand. Her daughter had some of her mother’s blood. “Please, Mommy, some more. Cut another finger.” 

Susanna doesn’t know how many times she cut herself. But she kept doing it over and over. Her blood was her daughter’s only hope.*

This story is both jarring and inspiring. It also draws our attention to what Jesus has done for us. He sacrificed himself for us on the cross. His blood is our only hope.

“…by his wounds we are healed.”

When we worship God, what attitude do we have? No matter what has happened over the previous week, we should strive to have a posture of radical gratitude.

It’s easy to feel entitled, as if God owes us something. That’s why we need to remember that we are otherwise buried in the wreckage of sin and unable to help our situation by ourselves. Absolutely everything good in our lives—in this life and in the next—is God’s gracious gift to us in Christ. 

Let’s worship with overflowing gratitude for the one who died for us, so that we could have life with him.


–The Up Devotional is published 5 days a week (Monday-Friday) and returns on April 24, 2023.

–*Max Lucado, The Applause of Heaven (Nasvhille: Thomas Nelson, 1999), 93-5.

–Bible quotes are from the NIV.

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