Devotions at Y Nationals in Memory of Emily Schindler

April 8, 2004


Good Morning.  I�m sure some of you have noticed our teams shirts, our PINK shirts.  The quote on our shirt says, �I Swim cuz I�m 2 sexy to play a sport that requires clothes�.  This quote is from a former SPY swimmer and it was in her yearbook her Senior year.  Emily did not have the talent of the swimmers here today, but she was a young girl that came to practice each and every day and worked hard.  Emily never made it to Y Nats, never made it to Florida, never made it to Short Course.  Unfortunately, and tragically, Emily Schindler was killed in a car accident two months ago.  Over half her life had been spent with SPY swimming.  I would like now to read her devotion she gave at our Winterfest swim meet January of 2003.


Because the currents of life pull, push, and suck us along, being strong swimmers is of vital importance.  We must become certified �lifeguards� if we are to help ourselves and others remain afloat and safe.  Without these skills, we fall prey to the ever-shifting moods of the rivers in which we paddle.


Without our swimming, we would be stranded in a river of wake.  Everything we have learned through swimming has helped us to paddle through the wake of our lives and helped to keep our faith afloat.  Whether it is a friendship that we have struggled through, or a family issure we have had to overcome, we have learned to deal with it through our swimming.  The intense friendships and relationships we have with our coaches have taught us how to become good friends and to learn respect for others.


Every day I wake up, I thank the Lord that I am able to get up and swim with some of the most amazing swimmers and people I have ever met.  I�m able to get in the pool with the top 16 swimmers and teammates that have made short course since they were 12.  I feel so grateful to my coach for seeing something in me that my times don�t show.  So, whenever you feel that it isn�t worth it to get up at 4 in the morning for swim practice, just remember the amazing people you get to see when you get there.


This has been the greatest journey of my life.



Emily, today you made it to Florida in more ways than you ever, ever could have imagined.


Let us pray.

Let us all remember on this last day of competition and on our journeys home, to live each and every day to its fullest.  To treat with love and kindness all human beings, no matter what the situation, and as Emily said, we will all share that �great journey through life�.