The shark we saved

Originally appeared on

A few years ago, while I was on a dive trip to the “Big Island” of Hawaii, we heard talk of a shark that was unable to eat because a large fishing hook was lodged in the back of its mouth. About 20 days earlier, a fisherman had caught the unwanted shark and simply cut the line, leaving it defenseless and sentencing the five-foot-long predator to a probable death by starvation.

A few of us who were diving in the area thought we might be able to free the shark in some way. I’m an experienced diver, and my buddies were divemasters who knew those waters very well. They’d already been down to the cave the shark was resting in, seeing it firsthand, so we knew we needed to use wisdom and skill moving forward.

I’m a Christian Scientist, and my spiritual instincts tell me that God is the source of wisdom and has the right answer in any situation. As Mary Baker Eddy wrote in Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures: “Understanding the control which Love held over all, Daniel felt safe in the lions’ den, and Paul proved the viper to be harmless. All of God’s creatures, moving in the harmony of Science, are harmless, useful, indestructible. A realization of this grand verity was a source of strength to the ancient worthies. It supports Christian healing, and enables its possessor to emulate the example of Jesus. ‘And God saw that it was good.’”

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