Jesus and the Thai cave rescue
Like those young boys, we're trapped unless a rescuer comes from the outside.
The incredible rescue of the 12 Thai boys and their soccer coach is a story many of us will never forget.
It's a tale of hope over despair, of triumph over adversity, of sacrifice, honour and the unstoppable power of love.
And for Christians, it's a powerful illustration of the incredible lengths God went to in rescuing us from our own place of darkness.
No way out
For those young boys, trapped and lost in a complex cave system, there was no chance of escape by themselves. Their path was blocked by rising waters and they couldn't swim.
Like us trying to fight against the power of sin and death, they were helpless. Completely and utterly unable to save themselves through their own efforts.
For the boys, salvation depended on a rescuer coming from the outside.
They needed a saviour who was equipped to overcome the obstacles. And for them, that help arrived in the form of specially trained divers with oxygen tanks and masks.
The only hope
What a moment it must have been for those boys when those first divers came up out of the water and spoke to them.
Here finally was their chance of being rescued by someone who knew the way out, and who was willing to take them by the hand and lead them to safety.
The boys just needed to do one thing. Put their lives in the hands of their rescuer.
For these young boys who couldn't swim, it must have taken a giant leap of faith to put on their own masks as they were led - often blinded by the murky water - through a complex maze of dangerous underwater caves.
And yet, they knew this was their only chance. Survival depended on them completely trusting their rescuer ... and not turning back.
For us, the same is true.
We're all lost
Without God, we are trapped in sin and darkness. Death and judgment are inevitable.
And yet, Jesus came from outside our world, offering us our one and only hope. And so we cling to him, even though it might get dark and murky sometimes, because he alone can lead us to safety. He is the way, the truth, and the life.
And like the outpouring of celebrations and joy around the world at the rescue of those boys, the angels rejoice in our rescue.
Have you been rescued?
If you're a follower of Jesus, give thanks for your rescue today. Through God's amazing grace, what once was lost is now found. You can trust Jesus to lead you safely home.
If you're not yet a follower of Jesus, it's time to see the reality of your situation. Without a rescuer, you will face death and judgment alone. But Jesus is ready to take you to safety ... and he promises to save all those who put their trust in him.
Let's hold on to him and never look back.