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Child's Lost Ball Helps Man Survive at Sea

A tourist named Ivan was swimming in the ocean at Myti Beach in Greece when he was carried away by a series of powerful currents. Friends alerted the nearby coast guard, but they couldn’t find him, and he along with a friend were eventually declared to be lost at sea.

But 18 hours later, rescuers pulled Ivan out of the ocean, cold and shaken, but alive. That’s because shortly after his ocean ordeal began, he found an unexpected floatation device--a children’s ball. Just like Tom Hanks in the movie Cast Away, Ivan found himself clinging onto the ball for survival, except rather than a volleyball, it was a child-sized soccer ball.

Ivan’s recovery was covered extensively in Greek national media, and several newspapers carried the photo where he posed with his grateful father, the mayor of Kassandra, and the fateful ball. The ball in the photo caught the attention of a mom who recognized it as the toy her son lost at the beach 10 days prior. Not only had the sea currents pulled the ball over 80 miles before he was able to grab onto it, but Ivan testified that the ball was only half-inflated. In Ivan’s home region of north Macedonia, people are rightfully calling it a miracle.

Possible Preaching Angle:

1) Word of God - When our lives are at stake, we must hold on to God's Word, for in it is life and salvation; 2) Rescue - God can use the most unlikely things to rescue his people. He has used: A whale (Jonah 1:17), a raven (1 Kings 17:6), the jawbone of a donkey (Judges 15:15), and a handful of flour (1 Kings 17:12).

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