He helped save people every day—but he had no idea how to save himself.
Jason Sautel had it all. Confident in his abilities and trusted by his fellow firefighters, he was making a name for himself on the streets of Oakland, California. His adrenaline-fueled job even helped him forget the pain of his childhood—until the day he looked into the eyes of a jumper on the Bay Bridge and came face to face with a darkness he knew would take him down as well.
In the following months, a series of traumatic emergency calls—some successful, others impossible-to-forget failures—drove Jason deeper into depression. Even as he continued his lifesaving work, he realized he could never rescue everyone, and he had no idea how to save himself.
In the end, Jason was forced to confront the truth: only the relentless power of love could pull him back from his own deadly fall. Action-packed, spiritually honest, and surprisingly romantic, The Rescuer transports readers inside the pulse-pounding world of firefighting and into the heart of a man who needed to be broken before he could finally be made whole.
In this moving debut, high school dropout and Oakland firefighter Sautel shares his experience of job stress that led to depression and how he came to be saved by faith. One of the writer's earliest memories is of his first day of school, when his teacher placed him in a dark closet because he misbehaved; it was there he learned to carry around his own "closet of fear." After his parents divorced, his mother moved across the country to North Carolina, while Sautel remained in California with his abusive, emotionally distant father. Sautel became a firefighter at age 18, and initially he found the work and camaraderie rewarding. But the buildup of traumatic experiences nearly led him to give up after a particularly harrowing moment when he failed to convince a bridge jumper not to jump. Then, a near-death experience in a fire causes Sautel to take a relationship he'd started a few months prior more seriously, making him realize how much he wanted to live and that "the times of peace, the genuine love, was God." Mostly concerned with the unique difficulties of his life in the line of fire, Sautel's riveting account will appeal to Christians concerned with the effects of trauma on mental health.