David stood in the path and the radiance of the sun was warm on his head. He turned toward it, but it was too bright and he had to shield his eyes. He looked to his right and in the distance many cattle were grazing in the hills. To his left, a badger wallowed into the forest. And he knew that no matter which direction he looked, it was all owned by the master.
In the distance there appeared to be a pond or a lake. In this heat it could be a mirage. He walked toward it, and it spread out in front of him. The water was inviting, so he began running toward it. It was a good deal farther to it than he thought, and when he reached the water’s edge, he was out of breath. Still, he stripped his clothes off and waded into the water.
The bottom of the lake fell away and David had to swim to stay afloat. He could see an island ahead and decided to swim to it, but as he swam, he felt a pain in his side. He tried to tread water to rest, but the pain grew worse. He swam hard to try to reach land and felt himself drift beneath the surface. He pulled himself to the surface and gasped for air, but he soon found himself beneath it again.
As the thought that he may not make it formed in his mind, David felt an arm around his waist. His head was lifted to the air, and he was being pulled through the water. Soon the figure beside him was walking dragging David through the water. When David could sit up in the water, the stranger let go of him and began to walk away.
When David had caught his breath, he yelled out, “Hey. Thank you for saving my life.” The stranger turned and waved to him, “See to it that it is a life worth saving.”
The story continues in three weeks at a talk I will be giving at Bethany Lutheran church in Crystal Lake, Illinois on November 30. I hope you will join me there.