Our Rescuer

by BJ Rudge

Just like many of you, I have been following the situation with the soccer team trapped in a cave in Thailand. On the day those boys and their coach walked into the cave, they had no idea what would transpire over the next few weeks. What was meant to be a moment of innocent fun turned into a life and death situation. For days they remained in this cave, desperate and with little hope.  However, because of the courageous and selfless acts of many individuals, they were ultimately rescued from their hopeless situation.

Like this soccer team, we often make decisions in life that at the moment seem innocent and fun yet prove to be destructive. Whether it’s engaging in a certain sinful behavior, or pursuing an unhealthy relationship, we can find ourselves moving deeper into the damaging consequences of an ungodly life.

Maybe you have made decisions that have left you without hope and any ability to save yourself. Fortunately, like this soccer team, you also have a rescuer who willingly put his life on the line to save you. Even though it was ultimately your sinful decisions that placed you in this desperate situation, God in His grace and mercy, sent His Son to rescue you from your sins. As God’s Word states,

“When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners” (Romans 5:6).

Just as these boys are alive today because of their rescuers, we too can experience eternal life because of our Rescuer.

“For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins” (Colossians 1:13, 14).

Perseverance in the Face of Challenge

by BJ Rudge, Ph.D.

When I ran track in high school, I was willing to try any event – short or long-distance running, jumping, throwing events; everything except pole-vaulting (which I thought was insane).

I read an article about Charlotte Brown, who in the spring of 2015, won the bronze medal for pole-vault in the state of Texas. While winning any medal in states is a great accomplishment, this is not what caught my attention. This high school senior ran down the 130 foot plus runway, carrying a pole about 10 feet in length, and vaulted over 11 feet in the air – all as a blind person.

Charlotte’s story is inspiring; an excellent reminder of having perseverance and determination in the face of challenges and obstacles. She had to count her steps and use a beeper to tell her when to plant the pole. Having these safeguards in place, she knew where she was on the runway, thereby allowing her to successfully make her vault.

Charlotte Brown’s amazing feat carries another important lesson: We need spiritual safeguards to provide guidance and direction. Our greatest safeguard is the Word of God. In fact, the Bible has everything we need to know to live out the Christian faith in this world (2 Timothy 3:16, 17). Just as Charlotte counted her steps and used a beeper to keep her on track, let us look to God’s Word to keep us on the right path.

“Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” Psalm 119:105