So much of the news we hear, watch, and read day by day is filled with the negative aspects of humanity. A constant diet of crumbling economies, political scandal, and rising crime rates is not good for our souls. It is no wonder that depression is considered by some to be an epidemic in our country.

So you can see why I was both surprised and happy to read a story concerning a watchful lifeguard at our local Jackson Park. On a recent sunny afternoon, a young girl about six years old swam a little too far toward deep water. As she realized that her little toes could not touch the bottom of the pool without her head going under water, panic began to set in. Sometimes safety is just a foot or two away, but it is hard to see it. If only someone would see you are in trouble and help!

Fortunately, a young, yet watchful lifeguard (he was only 17) saw the struggling girl. He quickly and calmly reacted, placed his buoy under her arms and floated her to shallow water. Her heart, and his, was probably beating so hard that you would have thought everyone could hear it. He explained to her afterwards where there were dangers, and reassured her that he would be there watching.

What a wonderful story! I only wish it had been considered front page material. It reminds me of a passage in Hebrews.

 Obey those who rule over you, and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls, as those who must give account. Let them do so with joy and not with grief, for that would be unprofitable for you.  (Heb 13:17 NKJV)

It is comforting to know that our Lord and Savior loves us so much that he gave us a type of ‘spiritual lifeguard’ for our lives. The elders of Christ’s church care for and love every soul that belongs to God and more. They are there to comfort, encourage, teach, correct, guide, and pull us to safety when we drift into dangerous water. Pray for them and encourage them in their work because their responsibility is great…and they must remain ever watchful.