Dinkey Creek under creative commons licenseWhile bringing his family camping trip to an end last week in Fresno, California, an off-duty police officer happened to be in the right place at the right time to do ministry-on-the-fly to save a 5-year-old boy who drowned. He and his wife heard screams and approached the banks of a nearby creek to see what was going on.

The boy had just been pulled from the water where he had been laying lifeless for five minutes underwater. His mother stood there stunned and panicked. Officer Curtis Shurtliff, after finding no pulse, started CPR on the boy as his family members tried to get a cell signal to call 911. Even after several minutes of no pulse, Shurtliff felt he could not give up on the boy.

Thirty minutes into giving CPR with no pulse, Shurtliff turned to the boy’s mom as he continued compressions and asked her if she believed in Jesus as her Savior. When she said yes, he urged her and a group around them to start praying. As soon as they ended the prayer with “in Jesus’ name, Amen,” Officer Shurtliff says he felt a pulse from the boy at that very moment. He gives glory to God for the miracle. The boy is now alert and recovering well. The officer and his wife even visited him over the weekend to check up on him.

This incident demonstrates how important it is to always be ready to minister for the Lord to someone else’s need(s) even as we go about carrying out our schedules. Shurtliff must have been in the habit of keeping the Lord on his mind since he drew the mom’s attention to where her help could truly come from in a life-threatening emergency.