One morning, not too long ago, I opened the morning paper to read about a woman in our area who was out in her yard gathering herbs when the ground beneath her gave way and she found herself trapped. One minute her backyard looked as it did the day before and the next it now had a gaping hole in which she had fallen into, face down, unable to get up.
As the reporter described her ordeal, I imagined this woman with a cell phone in her pocket able to place 3 or 4 calls which kept disconnecting. She then placed one more call and threw the phone up out of the hole and then began screaming. That last call went through and the receiver called 911 who sent a police officer who, guided by her screams, reached the woman in distress but was unable to pull her out of the "muck and mire" she found herself in. While holding on to her hand and arm he kept talking to her while waiting for the Fire/Rescue team. After what must have seemed like hours, help arrived and this overcome woman was lifted from her muddy trap.
While reading the above account, I was reminded of a rescue I experienced several years ago. I was "stuck". Stuck in the sin of self-focus, pride, greed, fleshly desires, addiction and unbelief.
For years, when sharing my faith journey, I have described it as the sinkhole above. A place of "muck and mire" that was threatening to suffocate me. I couldn't think straight, I couldn't choose wisely - I could barely breathe.
And then - there was GOD. He brought His power against the forces of hell that were trying to destroy me and rescued me from the domain of darkness and transferred me into the kingdom of the son of His love.
"Give thanks to the Father who has established us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light. He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love." Col.1:12-13
Immediately He pulled me out of the "mud". Imagine my joy as I walked with Him through the study of His Word and found His rescue written down thousands of years ago as the psalmist cried out to
"He also brought me up out of a horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock and established my steps." Ps. 40:2
If our lady of the sinkhole doesn't "clean-up and restore" the ground surrounding her home she is risking her life. If I return to old paths and behaviors; forgetting the divine transformation the Lord has performed in my heart, I risk my life for Christ. I would remain His, but my life on earth, lived my way, one foot on solid ground and one foot in the miry ditch, would not draw others to a life in Christ.
When tempted to wander, I cry -
"I sink in deep mire, where there is no standing: I have come into deep waters where the floods overflow me. Waters flowed over my head; I said, "I am cut off!" I called on Your name, O Lord, from the lowest pit. You Have heard my voice""Do not hide Your ear from my sighing, from my cry for help." You drew near on the day I called on You, and said, "Do not fear!" Ps. 69:2, Lam. 3:54-57
Lord of heaven and earth, this heart looks up and over the horizon and the exclamation of the psalmist becomes my own: "I would have lost heart, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living." Ps. 27:13
Thanks be to you, my King and my God.