Along with millions of other people, I can't stop checking in on the progress of the Chilean mine rescue. It's a remarkable story of hope, courage and the power of determination that finds a way through the most difficult challenge. As I write this, the 19th miner has just been raised to the surface. He looks in great shape and very strong as he greets his family, friends and rescuers.
As I watch this taking place I can't help but be reminded of a striking biblical parallel. We begin with 33 men hopelessly trapped in a life threatening situation through no fault of their own. The collapse isolated them from normal living. By grace, they were discovered 2500 feet underground. A rescue plan was enacted and a way was made for them to return to relationship (fellowship) with those who love them.
Here's the part that really gets me excited. There were multiple shafts drilled into their space. Of all of those shafts, only one can get you out! You might try to crawl out, dig out, wiggle out, but the only way out is through the tunnel with the rescue capsule. The miners did nothing to contribute to the drilling of the shaft, the building of the capsule or the ensuring of fresh air, food and water. All they could do is benefit from the kindness and goodness of others. As the first miner got into the capsule, I couldn't help but hold my breath and watch, hoping and praying that all would go well. As the capsule rose, the miner's family gathered in awaiting his arrival. Who could not be moved by the sight of his son in tears as he awaited his daddy's arrival?
The words of Jesus come to mind as I ponder the drama in Chile. He says 'I am the way, the truth and the life.' I realize that we live in a time when the idea of an exclusive path to heaven is almost offensive to some people, but there is only one way out of the mess the bible calls sin. Jesus is the only way. His offer of a restored relationship with the ONE who loves us most is unconditional. He has taken care of everything. All we need to do is say yes to Him and put our trust in Him.
I love how everyone cheers when the capsule carrying another miner arrives safely at the surface. Family is there, rescuers are there and everyone is celebrating another safe arrival. It's a picture of heaven to me. Heaven watches and waits for our safe arrival. When we get there we will all shout the name of the One who rescued us! We will see those who have been waiting and those who arrived before us. What a day that will be!!