As a pastor, Andy Foor has been saving souls by sharing God's Word. Little did he know one early Saturday morning in Alaska that he would also be credited for saving not just a human soul but a human life as well—with the use of his fishing rod!
Foor, a resident of Everett, Pennsylvania, was enjoying a summer vacation, doing his favourite hobby—fishing—off a dock downstream of the Sterling Highway bridge in Soldotna, Alaska, when he saw two women walking along the bank of the river, according to the Peninsula Clarion.
Suddenly, he saw one of the women fell into the water. She resurfaced after about 15 seconds and started screaming, "I can't swim! I'm drowning!"
The woman was not wearing a life vest. When she sank into the water again, all that Foor could see was the top of her blonde hair.
Foor and the other anglers standing on the bridge felt helpless. No one could reach her fast since she fell upstream of the bridge and was far out in the river.
Instinctively, the pastor prayed for her while seeking God's help on what to do.
"I just said a prayer, and a voice said, 'Throw your line out into the water,'" Foor told the Peninsula Clarion, as quoted by the Gospel Herald.
"I hollered to the girl so that I'd get her attention, and I cast," Foor said.
He said he considered removing first the hook and weight of his 50-pound braided line, but the inner voice, which he believes to be that of God Himself, told him not to worry about the hook and weight.
The line reached the drowning woman and she grabbed it. Foor swung her back toward the dock downstream. Another angler went down the steps to help her up onto the dock, where others helped her dry off and warm up.
As Foor was coming down to see if she was alright, the woman asked repeatedly, "Where's the man who threw me the line?"
The pastor replied, "The Father loves you, and here's the man."
She came straight to him and hugged him, speechless with gratitude.
The other anglers thought the woman could have drowned in the cold, fast-flowing river had he not quickly thrown her the line.
But Foor said all credit for the rescue goes to God Who just used him as His instrument.