Belfast Telegraph

We are saved and taken out of the pit by God's relentless grace


Mercy mission: Rescuers on their way to assist the stranded team
Mercy mission: Rescuers on their way to assist the stranded team

By Rev Gareth Burke

All of us will be aware of the terrible situation that has developed in northern Thailand where 12 boys and their football coach are trapped in a flooded cave.

It is our hope and prayer that rescue attempts will soon be successful, but as we wait anxiously for news we recognise that the situation is complex and fraught with difficulties.

The teenage boys and their 25-year-old coach have been trapped for over two weeks.

They were found last Monday evening by rescue divers on a rock shelf about 4km from the cave mouth.

We're obviously glad that they were found alive and have now received food, foil blankets and medical attention, but we wait nervously to see how the situation develops. Hopefully by the time you read this article this terrible ordeal will be over.

When you think about their situation you are immediately struck by the fact that they are entirely dependent on others.

They cannot release themselves.

They can communicate with their rescuers and receive supplies, but they have to agonisingly wait for their rescue team to devise a plan of escape and to inform them of the best way forward.

Their whole desire and longing will be to get out of the cave as soon as possible but presently they are trapped, unable to free themselves. It is a desperate situation that has impacted people all around the world.

The plight of those people trapped in the Thailand cave has prompted me to think about Psalm 40.

Here the Psalmist vividly describes the condition of the natural man as being like a person who is stuck in a pit or a cave. But God has saved him.

In his grace and love he has reached down into the pit and pulled him out: "He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand" (Psalm 40:2).

What an amazing thing! How great is our God.

If you are a Christian, if you have faith in Jesus Christ, you need to recognise today that "salvation is of the Lord".

We could not save ourselves. We were stuck in a cave. But God reached out to us. He rescued us. He drew us to himself. There's only one response to this amazing truth: Hallelujah - Praise the Lord!

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph