Horace Porter, served as General Grant’s secretary during the Civil War. Before the epic Battle of Cold Harbor, he noticed an interesting occurrence: many of the northern troops were sewing their clothes before battle. That seemed strange, so he decided to investigate.
What he discovered was this, "... upon closer examination it was found that the men were calmly writing their names and home addresses on slips of paper, and pinning them on the backs of their coats, so that their dead bodies might be recognized upon the field, and their fate made known to their families at home."
Some later read Porter's report and interpreted it as a sign of bad morale. Porter disagreed, "They were veterans who knew well from terrible experience the danger which awaited them…. Their minds were occupied not with thoughts of shirking their duty, but with preparation for the desperate work of the coming morning. Such courage is more than heroic – it is sublime."
I think disciples of the Lord Jesus should maintain a similar attitude. Jesus, in Luke 9:23, tells us, “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.”
Crosses are for killing. We should all be prepared to die in the service of the King. Even if we do not die physically, we shall surely die to self.
There are things more important than our own lives.
Story source: H. W. Brands The Man Who Saved the Union