Wednesday, July 1, 2020

A Life-Saving Encounter

By David A. Sargent

    “A weekend traffic stop in Kennebunk turns into a life-saving encounter,” said WMTW-TV News 8 (Portland, Maine) anchor, Tracy Sabol.
    84-year-old Gavin “Scotty” Falconer and his wife were driving to get some ice cream when they were stopped for speeding in a 25 MPH speed limit zone by Officer Matthew Harrington.  As Officer Harrington was writing a warning, Falconer slumped over his steering wheel lifeless – with no breathing and no pulse.  Shortly after handing over his license and registration, Falconer suffered an apparent heart attack.
    Officer Harrington sprung into action.  From what his wife told him, Falconer relayed what happened: “He came running back, saw me there, yanked me out of the car, ripped my beautiful pink shirt (but that’s alright; it was old anyway), and, I guess, I was gone -- no pulse, nothing.  And he started giving me CPR.”  A second officer arrived on the scene with a defibrillator.  It is believed that CPR and a shock from the defibrillator brought Falconer back to life.
    When he was interviewed in the hospital by WMTW news reporter Paul Merrill, Falconer had not seen Officer Harrington but was looking forward to meeting him under different circumstances.  “The first thing I would say to him is, ‘Thank you.’” *
    It may be that being stopped for a speeding infraction saved Falconer’s life.
    No one likes receiving a traffic ticket because none of us likes to be told that we’ve done something wrong.  But, just as in Falconer’s case, being told to stop when we’re committing an infraction may save our lives!
    ALL of us have made many infractions against God!  “For ALL have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).  “The wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23); that’s what earn by these “infractions” (sins).  Being stopped and told to repent (turn from) our sins – and we heed the warning -- is the best thing that could happen to us!
    The Good News (the Gospel) is that even though we have committed many infractions, God loves us so much that He gave His Son Jesus to die on the cross for our sins (John 3:16; 1 John 4:10).
    God will forgive those who place their faith and trust in Jesus (Acts 16:30-31), turn from their sins in repentance (Acts 17:30-31), confess Him before men (Romans 10:9-10), and be baptized (immersed) into Christ for the forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:38).
    He will continue to cleanse those who continue to follow Him by “walking in the light”
of His Word (1 John 1:7).
    We need to hear the bad news (we have sinned and sin leads to eternal destruction, Matthew 7:13-14), so that we can hear, understand, appreciate, and accept the GOOD NEWS: Jesus came to save us from our sins!
    And when we accept God’s offer of salvation and eternal life through Jesus, the first thing we’ll want to say is, “Thank You!”
    Won’t YOU turn from sin and accept God’s offer on His terms?

- David A. Sargent, minister for the Church of Christ at Creekwood in Mobile, Alabama, is also the editor of an electronic devotional entitled "Living Water."  To learn more about this excellent resource contact David via their website:
* Information gleaned from The Huffington Post ( and

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