The summer of my sixteenth year was a hot one. I had been given the job of head lifeguard for the local swimming pool and as the months passed I developed friendships with the patrons. It was common for me to dive into the refreshing water and splash around with the children, providing a swimming lesson or two while on duty.
One particular day the hours had stretched out endlessly under the oppressive heat and there were only a handful of people left swimming. I was passing the last few minutes until closing by playing in the shallow end of the pool with a little girl while keeping an eye on two older boys swimming laps, both of whom I knew to be strong swimmers. It occurred to me that I hadn’t seen one of them come up for a breath in a while, so I called his name. When he didn’t answer, I thought he was joking around with me, but a quick scan found him floating mid water and in need of immediate attention. His buddy helped me get him out of the pool and onto the scorching concrete where I began CPR while simultaneously crying out to the Lord for help.
After what seemed like forever, his eyes began to open as he coughed up a considerable amount of chlorinated water. A wave of nausea mixed with overwhelming gratitude washed over me as I thanked the Lord for answering my prayers. I stayed right by his side, monitoring him closely until the ambulance came to take him to the hospital.
On the way home, I had to pull my car over while I sobbed uncontrollably. I realized that in all the moments I had spent with that person over the summer we had never once discussed Jesus. Was he a believer? Did he know that I was? What would have happened if he hadn’t survived? I was so shaken that I drove straight to the hospital and was greeted by his thankful family.
The doctor came out to shake my hand and said, “So this is the young lady that saved his life.” To which I replied, “It wasn’t me. God did it.”
I looked the boy in the eyes and said with all the boldness of a sixteen-year-old girl, “God has BIG plans for you and I can’t wait to tell you all about Him once you recover.”
God saved that boy’s life that day, but He also gave me a priceless gift by showing me His grace. He taught me the importance of sharing my faith in a Savior whose primary objective is saving lives.
For you are saved by grace, through faith, and this is not from yourselves; it is God’s gift .Ephesians 2:8
This article originally appeared in LifeWay Women’s Journey Magazine – June 2020