Tuesday, March 09, 2010
Today’s Topic: Our Rescuer
Today’s Text: 2 Peter 2:9 (NLT) So you see, the Lord knows how to rescue godly people from their trials.
In 1956, during the Mau Mau uprisings in East Africa, God demonstrated His power to rescue His people from their trials. The story is told by veteran missionary Morris Plotts.
A band of roving Mau Maus came to the village of Lauri, surrounded it, and killed every inhabitant, including women and children—three hundred people in all. Not more than three miles away was the Rift Valley Academy, a private boarding school where children were being educated while their missionary parents worked elsewhere. Immediately upon leaving the carnage at Lauri the Mau Maus came with spears, clubs, torches, and bows and arrows to the school, bent on destruction.
You can imagine the fear of those children at the school. Word had already reached them about the destruction of Lauri. There was no place to flee. The only resource was prayer.
Out in the night, lighted torches were seen coming toward the school. Soon there was a complete ring of these terrorists about the school, cutting off all avenues of escape. Shouting and curses could be heard coming from the Mau Maus. Then they began to advance on the school, tightening the circle, shouting louder, coming closer. Suddenly, when they were close enough to throw a spear, they stopped. They began to retreat, and soon they were running into the jungle. A call had gone out to the authorities, and an army had been sent in the direction of the school to rescue the inhabitants. But by the time the army arrived, the would-be assassins had dispersed. The army spread out in search of them and captured the entire band of raiding Mau Maus.
Later, before the judge at their trial, the Mau Mau leader was called to the witness stand. The judge asked him, “On this night did you kill the inhabitants of Lauri?”
The leader replied, “Yes.”
“Was it your intent to do the same at the Rift Valley Academy?”
“Well then,” asked the judge, “why did you not complete the mission? Why didn’t you attack the school?”
The leader, who had never read the Bible and never heard the gospel, replied, “We were on our way to attack and destroy all the people at the school. But as we came closer, all of a sudden between us and the school there were many huge men, dressed in white with flaming swords. We became afraid and we ran to hide!”
You may not be in danger of an army, but you are in a spiritual war, and your enemy the devil is stalking you like a roaring lion, seeking to devour and destroy you. But every attack can be, in fat for our spiritual health it must be, viewed as an opportunity for our faith and trust in the keeping and protecting power of God to be displayed in our lives. If only we would get out of the way and let God do His work in us.
Charles Chu, writing in Leadership Journal, tells this story:
A few years ago I had a chance to become a hero, but it turned out to be an embarrassing moment. I was in China on a tour group. Our tour bus was on the way to a scenic spot with another tour bus in front of us. It was snowing, and the road was muddy.
Suddenly the bus ahead of us skidded off the road and tipped over on its side in a rice field. I quickly jumped off my tour bus, ran to the overturned bus, and jumped on top. Windows were shattered, and people inside were obviously hurt. The emergency door was facing upward, so I grabbed the handle of the emergency door and pulled. The door did not open. I kept pulling hard, but it wouldn’t budge.
By this time, others had come and were pulling people out through the windows, so I gave up on the door and joined them. After I moved away from the door, another man went over to the door. He turned the door handle, and the door opened easily.
I suddenly realized why the door did not open for me: I had been standing on the door as I tried to open it. With good intentions to save lives, I had become the biggest obstacle blocking the door of rescue.
The temptations and trials in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the test to be more than you can stand. When you are tested, he will show you a way out so that you can endure. (1 Corinthians 10:13)