Walking on Water on Coast Guard Day
But when he [Peter] saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!” Matthew 14:30
My children loved crossing the plank onto the ship to visit Dad at work, especially the 378-foot Coast Guard cutters he served on in Hawaii. They also enjoyed family deployments when we travelled to another island and they experienced riding the waves, watching Dolphins, and even the rolling of the ship. As children of a Coast Guard officer our children learned to swim as babies, usually starting at two weeks old. They also learned water safety.
However, they felt sad when Dad left for a few months at sea and even sadder when a search and rescue on the way home delayed his arrival. They learned that Dad’s work included saving people at sea. We read about Jesus and Peter walking on water and Jesus saving Peter when he began to sink. Water is fun, but it can become dangerous.
Summer is a great time for boating and other sports. It’s also a time to be thankful for the Coast Guard and their ability to rescue boaters. Founded August 4, 1790 when George Washington signed the Tariff Act, it’s the oldest armed forces maritime service (eight years older than the US Navy). It began as a revenue service, but merged with the U.S. life-saving service in 1915, renamed the Coast Guard, making it the only maritime service dedicated to saving lives and enforcing the nation’s maritime laws. They protect more than 100,000 miles of US waterways and average 45 rescues daily.
Saving lives is always important. What’s more important is saving lives for eternity. In fact baptism with water is a sign of salvation. Hopefully, we start teaching our young ones early about eternal safety in heaven. Thank God as a family for salvation.
Pray for the men and women who serve in the Coast Guard by saying or singing the Coast Guard Hymn:
Eternal Father, Lord of hosts,
Watch o'er the ones who guard our coasts.
Protect them from the raging seas
And give them light and life and peace.
Grant them from thy great throne above
The shield and shelter of thy love.
-George H. Jenks, Jr., 1955
Karen Whiting is an international speaker, former television host, and author of twenty-five books. Discover more about American history in her book Stories of Faith and Courage From the Home Front: From the French Indian War to the Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.