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Friday, June 28, 2019

FW: The Lifeguard

The Lifeguard

As a lifeguard on the New Jersey coastline, 20-year-old Peter LaQuaglia has been trained to spot
people struggling or drowning in the water and exercise life-saving measures to help them.
Recently, his training enabled him save a life away from the water.

On Friday, June 7th, LaQuaglia had left his lifeguard post at Seaside Heights for his lunch break.
He was enjoying a slice of pizza from a nearby restaurant when he heard a woman screaming
frantically, begging for help.

LaQuaglia rushed to the boardwalk to find a little boy who was not breathing. The 10-month-old boy
was choking on what appeared to be one of those loose plastic rings from a water bottle that
sometimes breaks off when the cap is unscrewed. The woman who had been crying out for help was the
boy's grandmother. She was in a state of shock.

The lifeguard immediately used his training to try to help the little boy. He employed the Heimlich
maneuver to try to dislodge the plastic ring from the child's throat. "You flip them over on their
stomach and give them pats on the back until they cough up whatever they're choking on," said
LaQuaglia, describing the maneuver.

"[It was] probably the scariest moment of my life knowing I literally had someone's life in my
hands," the young lifeguard said.

Eventually, LaQuaglia was able to dislodge the ring from the boy's mouth, and the little boy started
breathing again. After being evaluated, it was determined that the little boy had made a complete
recovery, thanks to the heroic efforts of an "off-duty" lifeguard who responded at just the right

When our sins were "choking us to death," Someone came to our rescue. Our Lifeguard is Jesus, the
Son of God. It wasn't that He just "happened" to be near and able to respond; it was the eternal
plan of God to save us from our sins (see 1 Peter 1:18-20). However, He came "at just the right
time" (see Galatians 4:4-5).

In order to save our lives, Jesus had to give His life. He "gave Himself for our sins to rescue us
from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father" (Galatians 1:4 NIV). He
died for us so that we might live with Him forever (1 Thessalonians 5:10). His death paid the price
for the redemption of our sins so that we might be forgiven and receive the gift of eternal life
(Ephesians 1:7; Romans 6:23).

God will save and give eternal life to those who place their faith and trust in Jesus (Acts
16:30-31), turn from their sins in repentance (Acts 17:30-31), confess Jesus before men (Romans
10:9-10), and are baptized (immersed) into Christ for the forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:38). He will
continue to cleanse from sin those who continue to walk in the light of His Word (1 John 1:7-9).

At just the right time, our Lifeguard came to our rescue! He will save us if we will accept His
offer of salvation and eternal life.

Won't YOU?

-- David A. Sargent

* Information gleaned from "Lifeguard On His Lunch Break Saves Choking Baby In New Jersey" by CBS
New York,

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Drawing Strength from the Courage of Others

How thankful we should be for wonderful examples of courage that spur us on to greater strength in the Lord’s service.  Paul was just such an example: “And many of the brethren in the Lord, waxing confident by my bonds, are much more bold to speak the word without fear” (Phil.l:l4). These brethren, formerly timid and reticent, were drawing strength from the courage of Paul

Other examples abound. Stephen’s plea, ”Lord, lay not this sin to their charge”, surely had for its source of strength the forgiving spirit of the Lord (Acts 7:60).  The Thessalonian church found a source of strength in the example of the churches in Judea (1 Thess. 1:14). The Philippian church, a model of courage and conviction, could no doubt trace much of its strength back to the wonderful example of patience and equanimity demonstrated by Paul and Silas while in their midst. The Hebrew Christians were admonished to ”remember them that had the rule over you, men that spake unto you the word of God; and considering the issue of their life, imitate their faith” (Heb. 13:7).

Christians of this generation are similarly drawing strength from the courage of others. Young men who refuse to miss services of the church to play on a ball team; young women who refuse to be seen in public in scanty attire; business men who would lose their jobs rather than compromise their convictions; women who continue to adorn themselves in “meek and quiet spirits” whatever the sophisticated world thinks or says of them; sick people who bear their afflictions with patience and faith; elderly people who continue to attend worship when they are hardly able to go anywhere else; dying people who demonstrate how Christians ought to die; all are sources of strength and courage for others as they face similar circumstances.  These all have a common spirit with the great characters of the Bible; they see in their temptations, trials, afflictions, and persecutions a special opportunity to be like Christ, to demonstrate their fidelity to Him, and to provide a source of strength for those who might be weak and wavering around them.  They seize the opportunity and stand, and all of us are stronger because of them.  Of these courageous people this world truly is not worthy.

Are we, however, to be always on the receiving end of the strength of others?  As we draw strength from the courage of others, we must in turn become sources of strength and courage ourselves.  Others look to us.  Each of us has a “charge to keep,” and “God to glorify,” and a “present age to serve.”

- by Bill Hall


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