There are so many pits in life! Very basically, they fall into 2 categories. Ones that are put in front of us, and ones we drive around looking for – then jump in. I don’t mean tests, although there is often a test along with a pit. I mean painful situations – really painful. Unfair, emotionally exhausting, restrictive, stealers of hope, and the list goes on. And, because it’s a pit (however you got there); you can’t just “walk away.” One must climb out. The laws of physics require upward movement to free oneself from a pit. Physically, this makes sense.
Emotionally, it can be difficult to see a way out of a steep, slippery slope; our vision might be clouded by the lack of light in the pit. We may be so distraught that the answer is not totally clear.
I was a police dispatcher for years, and it was a regular occurrence that we had to help someone clear their head enough to be able to properly understand the situation in a very stressful time – and quickly. We did this by helping them mitigate their emotional overload just enough, or just long enough, to get the critical information. “Take 1 deep breath for me, and let’s start again…” These people were not inherently weak, or feeble minded – they were overwhelmed. It was understandable, but it was also a deterrent to resolution. It happens to everyone. When it happens, someone, or something, must draw our “vision” upward so we can see our way out.
But even then, we are still very much IN the pit. The climb is yet to be accomplished, and for that we need help. IF we look up, and IF we ask for help, there are people ready and waiting. If we don’t look up – if we don’t ask for help – we won’t see the rope dangling from the precipice, waiting to be used; waiting to lift us to safety, where our wounds can be healed. Looking up won’t make the pit go away – it will give us hope to endure, and the ability to see our way to freedom.
So – raising our arms in submission, we grab the rope and help our rescuers pull us up, back into a safe community where people are there to help us tend our wounds, if we let them. If we lash out, we may well fall back into the pit, and have to begin the rescue process all over again, or shrivel and die in darkness and seclusion. For the most part, sooner or later, we grab the rope. We move upward, toward the light.
For me, the first morsel of light is scripture. When life is kicking my butt, either because I dove in or was pushed, God’s light shines through His Word, and then I can see where the rope is. Sometimes it is obvious – right in front of me. Sometimes God has to gently turn me so I can see it. God won’t make us climb; but will give us the opportunity. We can accept help, or lay in darkness.
But when we reach up, we are pulled out. Once out, we get a shower, change clothes, get fed and rested, and rejoin our friends. Later, we might be able to help another who’s fallen in the same hole. We know the terrain, after all, so – once free – we may well have vital info to share to help others. God likes to send people to help people.
As well, once free, we have the choice to either refuse to jump in that pit again, or to look up quickly and seek help if we do fall; maybe even when we find ourselves on the edge, before we jump or slip back in…right?!
Hear my prayer, O Lord,
Give ear to my supplications!
In Your faithfulness answer me,
And in Your righteousness.
Do not enter into judgment with Your servant,
For in Your sight no one living is righteous.
For the enemy has persecuted my soul;
He has crushed my life to the ground;
He has made me dwell in darkness,
Like those who have long been dead.
Therefore my spirit is overwhelmed within me;
My heart within me is distressed.
I remember the days of old;
I meditate on all Your works;
I muse on the work of Your hands.
I spread out my hands to You;
My soul longs for You like a thirsty land. Selah
Answer me speedily, O Lord;
My spirit fails!
Do not hide Your face from me,
Lest I be like those who go down into the pit.
Cause me to hear Your lovingkindness in the morning,
For in You do I trust;
Cause me to know the way in which I should walk,
For I lift up my soul to You.
Deliver me, O Lord, from my enemies;
In You I take shelter. NKJV
God’s purpose is always His Glory (the display of pure truth and actions of a pure Master, that must be noticed and acknowledged), and our glorious redemption. As His Image bearers, we have been given free will – a deposit of His Sovereignty, meant to be used for godly purposes. We can choose to cooperate, be rescued, and LIVE reflecting His Glory, or we can choose to languish in darkness whether there by our own choice, the choice of others, or by “accident.”
August 4, 2021