I held my whistle loosely on my lips, I donned black ray bans, and my candy apple red toenail polish matched exactly to the color of my swimsuit. I totally looked like a lifeguard.
Unbeknownst to me a seven year-old girl by the name of Emily was drowning right beneath my candy-apple colored toes. Six weeks of lifeguard training went out the window when I saw Emily's blue eyes the size of saucers from under the water.
To the shame of David Hasselhoff and hundreds of Baywatch episodes I watched, I impulsively reached down into the water like Conan the Barbarian and pulled her out by her hair. Yes, her hair.
Emily was crying… her mother was crying… I was crying. Come on, it's tough living up to Wendy Peffercorn and Pam Anderson!
One thing I will never forget about my lifeguard training was an exercise taught by the instructor. He said he was going to pretend to be a typical drowning victim and we had to attempt to rescue him. Simple, right? Wrong! I dove into the water and swam as quickly as I could to "rescue" the victim.
However, when I reached him he was frantically reaching for me and grasping on to me so tight, we both went under. As I coughed up ten pounds of water and put down my pride he explained that an active victim is so gripped by fear that they will ruin a rescue attempt.
The drill was done again except this time he told us to use our discernment as to when we should dive in. A new student was chosen to do the rescue. He waited patiently on the pool deck until our instructor was so tired he would no longer fight against his own will to survive.
The moment he surrendered to the struggle, the trainee dove in and quickly cupped our instructor under his strong arms and pulled him to safety. This experience never left me. Even now I remember the look of exhaustion on the face of my instructor and the look of confidence on my fellow student.
I realized that Jesus Christ is our lifeguard. He performs CPR on us when our heart is under attack, He protects our life and discerns danger, He gives us warnings to keep us from danger, and when necessary, He waits until we have completely surrendered our will to fight only to reach out and save us.
There, in that moment, Jesus cups us under His nail pierced hands and pulls us to safety. In His arms is Life and Life abundantly. Stop fighting the inevitable and let Jesus save your life. For as it says in Mark 8:34, What good is it for a man to gain the whole world and lose his soul?
Live out a paradox today: give up the fight, win the battle.
by Bianca Juarez, In the Name of LoveLeave a Comment
What a perfect post for me to read right now! I feel that I’ve been fighting and fighting in life for awhile now, never really getting anywhere. Just the other day, I whole-heartedly told God I just couldn’t do it anymore. There was absolutely nothing I could do in my own human strength to change my situation. In that moment, I felt like God whispered to me…”finally.”
Thanks for sharing!
Marilyn Yocum says
LOVE this devotional thought! Ah, some of the fights we put up….that would be a good collection of stories. This was great.
Hahahahahahaha! This was great!
I got sucked into the story and before I knew it I was the one who was drowning. Thank you for sharing your (hilarious) story.
Oh Bianca – wonderfully, beautifully put. What a powerful word picture that will stay with me today. Thank you for painting it so vividly, so profoundly for one who is often grasping at the One who would save her.
Struggling this morning…thank you Bianca for changing my thinking this today!
Jennifer Rose says
I must confess I silently follow your bloggy! I read it to get (incouraged) Thanks for your honesty and testimony! This story is wonderfully written!I was cupped under His hand 6 years ago this past month and yes indeed I have actually LIVED LIFE these past 6 years! But yes I have to admit it is a struggle. It’s good to hear that others struggle as well and in this battle we do not fight the good fight alone!
Wow, that was awesome B! And frankly, just what I needed today. 🙂
Kelly Langner Sauer says
Wow – a gutsy instructor.
This is something we really don’t consider much, simply letting go, recognizing our need for rescue, letting Him rescue us. Really vivid illustration.
Love this! Great reminder!
Kristen@Moms Sharpening Moms says
I love the mental pictures you created with this post! So cool. My favorite line is your last one, “Live out a paradox today: win the fight and give up the battle.”
Thanks for writing this!
“…give up the fight, win the battle.” Now THAT is priceless! Perfect advice. Thanks!
I agree withe Deidra…that should be a bumper sticker!
I just shared on my blog how my relationship with husband is a battle against the enemy…and now I think I need to reflect on the ultimate tactic, surrender…surrendering to His will….wow. I can’t wait to share this with my husband tonight.
You are a blessing and I think I love you! 😀
Michelle at Graceful says
That was an awesome post — the drowning metaphor is a perfect fit. And your last line takes the cake. Nicely done!
THANK YOU for this post. This is my prayer for my sister. She is young, and struggles constantly with acknowledging her self-worth in God, depression, poor body image, etc. Despite accepting Jesus’ grace a couple years ago, she is dragged away, time and time again, into the temptation of filling her emptiness with alcohol and the affection of men. I want to help her, pull her out myself, but I can’t. Sometimes, all I can do is pray, and now I know what to pray for her.
I so needed to read this! Our small groups at church are all embarking on the same study this term: Life’s Healing Choices out of Saddleback Church. I think this perfectly describes how we get to the point of letting go of our hurts, hang-ups, and habits that have been secretly drowning us. Thank you!
I’m glad you guys enjoyed the visual.
I, on the other hand, still have nightmares of Emily’s eyes staring up at me while drowning.
Thanks for the love 🙂
Maria Huffman says
Great Post!!! Surrender is key. I am still learning how to swim in the pool of this world. Now taking swimming classes Daily with my Savior. 😉
Love this post…you have a way w/ words that is so encouraging..truly a gift from God!
Wow this otally spoke to me thank ou so much.
Awesome post B! I loved it because everyday we actually choose to fight God or surrender…and yes there are those day when you just want to be stubborn, but in the end God is the only one who will save us. I love the paradox: give up the fight win the battle…because it’s so true and we often think that the opposite is what works…thanks for the encouragement!
tammy@if meadows speak says
Bianca, I’ll take a Conan any day of the week, if it saves me. Leave a bald spot if need me, just pull me out. 😉
Hey that’s Wendy Peffercorn! 🙂
Katrina Iveshensheko says
Hahahahahahaha! That was great insight AND funny.
Thank you for sharing your personal story and weaving a tale of redemption. It was real and moving at the same time! God bless :))
I loved it and it perfectly describes our Savior! Thanks B’
I loved this and needed to hear it today. You know, one of those days when it feels like you’re drowning is a perfect time to remember our Savior is a lifeguard too 🙂
Bianca , you have no idea how much this post has helped me,i was so angry at God and I was already giving up on him and on me too. when i read this post I was like he (The Lord) was telling me to surrender to him and to let him take the wheel of my life, Thanks
incredible. I’ve been watching a family member fight the rescue for a while. good food for thought.
Aw! That made me cry! God is good.