Last summer I knew I wanted to work as a lifeguard at a local pool—so I took an intensive lifeguarding course as soon as summer break began. I spent 30 hours over the span of a week learning everything I needed to know in order to receive my lifeguard certification. Just a few days after completing all the requirements, I was hired to work at a pool nearby. I was really excited to start because I would be putting all the skills I had learned into real life practice!
But then, the night before my first day of work, I started feeling extremely nervous. In spite of my training, I doubted that I really had what it takes to rescue and save someone if the necessity arose. I was worried that if someone actually started drowning I would be so scared that I would forget how to rescue them.
I spent that night feeling really uneasy, and even considered not going in to work at all. Then the idea came to me to read some of that week’s Christian Science Bible Lesson, which was titled “God the Preserver of Man.” The Golden Text read, “The Lord guards you…. The Lord will protect you from all dangers; he will guard your life” (Psalms 121:5, 7, New Century Version). How applicable that passage was to my situation! My thought was now more at ease.
I realized that God is the real lifeguard: He is guarding and protecting everyone in the pool, and in my job I am simply expressing Him. All I had to do was be confident that if I needed to rescue someone, God would be right there guiding me and protecting everyone
God is guarding and protecting everyone in the pool, and in my job I am simply expressing Him.
In the Responsive Reading of the Lesson, I read, “I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust” (Psalms 91:2). This helped me to understand that I could trust God to protect and guard not just me, but everyone in the pool. Later that night I also thought about a quote from Education at The Principia, a book written by Mary Kimball Morgan, the founder of the school I attend. The quote is, “God would not give you something to do and fail to give you the wisdom, strength, and grace necessary to accomplish it” (p. 222). My feeling of uncertainty was replaced with the reassurance that I had all the training I needed to go up on that lifeguarding stand, and that God is constantly supplying me with all the confidence, grace, and strength I need to perform the job well. I went to bed that night feeling calmer and even looking forward to my first day of work.
When I woke up the next morning, I held steadfastly to the quotes I had been praying with the night before and went in to work that day confident that all was well. The first day went very smoothly—the staff at the pool was extremely friendly and supportive. Thankfully, I didn’t end up having to rescue anyone from drowning that summer, but I was put in several situations where I was able to help people, and I was grateful I had the opportunity to express God in this way.
I’m so grateful for the change of thought I had—from worry to confidence that God is in control—and the opportunity to understand better my relationship with Him.