Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Salvation as Rescue

Mario Gomez, 63, the oldest of the trapped miners, was the ninth man to be rescued.
He vowed never to go below again.

Long after I fell asleep last night Linda stayed up and watched the first Chilean miners emerge in the capsule called "Phoenix." When I awoke today we watched #s 10 & 11 step from darkness into the light. Seeing miner #10, Alex Vega, hold his wife in an enduring embrace was joy-filled and emotional.

We have here a metaphor for the Jesus-salvation idea. While I was in darkness, light entered the world. God descended to me in the form of humanity. Love came down and rescued me. As I emerged from darkness into light all heaven rejoiced. Now, years later, I still remember the dark world I once inhabited - a world of drugs, alcohol, self-centeredness and self-indulgence, failure, and eventually despair. At the young age of 21 I was in darkness and despair. I had flunked out of college, destroyed some relationships, and didn't have a clue about who I was or what, if anything, I was to do.

Then, one day, someone said these words to me: "God loves you." At that moment it was as if a drill bit had broken through the rock walls of my heart, revealing light from the land of the living. A hand reached forth. I took hold of it. I was lifted from death to life. My parents rejoiced.

Salvation is rescue. Salvation is redemption. Salvation is life. I was saved!

Today one miner said, "I'll never go back to mining again." And I have never gone back to the dark place I once was in. "Gracias Senor" is written on the front of the miners' t-shirts. Thank you God.