Winning Ways - from Hillcrest Baptist Church, Austin, Texas 
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Watchers and Doers
by Tom Goodman
March 2, 2011

Shortly after 18-year-old Shawn Durant began his day loading skiers on the lift at the Nordic Valley Ski Area in Utah, he heard a piercing scream.

Looking up the cable lines of the moving lift, his eyes met a scene that made his blood run cold.  Dangling by one arm from a moving chair was the figure of a child.  A woman was holding the child with one arm while holding herself in the chair with the other arm.

And the mother was desperately trying to pull her up as the chair advanced toward the first 30-foot tower.

Shawn feared that when the chair bumped over the tower pulleys, the girl would be shaken from the woman's grasp.  He yelled to the operator to stop the lift.  He ran under the chair and looked up at the girl, swaying nearly 3 stories above him.  "I can't hold her for long!" the mother cried.

Shawn scrambled up the ladder of the nearest tower, grabbed the thick, greasy cabled with his gloved fingers, and swung out in midair.  Hand over hand he made his way to the chair, lowered himself beside the mother, and reached down and pulled Angela up.

At a church service one Sunday after the incident, the mother recounted the rescue.  "There are doers and watchers in this world," she said.  "We owe our daughter's life to the fact that Shawn Durant is a doer."

Dramas like that are happening all around us.  Oh, the dramas aren't happening on ski lifts in Austin.  But in the world of the spirit, parents are fearful that they are losing their grip on their kids, and they worry about their boy or girl falling spiritually and morally.

What we need in our children's ministry and our youth ministry at Hillcrest are those who aren't satisfied with simply watching and commenting on the needs of our community.  No, we need people ready to do something about it.  As Steve Cloud joins our staff this week as our new Minister to Students, let's commit anew to join him in youth ministry and Karen Raulie in children's ministry.

This Sunday, I'm going to "commission" Steve and Karen -- and you -- to this vital work.  Join us @ 10!


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