In a land, not so far away and not so long ago, lived a woman who had, long since, lived in the dark confinement of a pit. She did not enjoy where she was nor did she entice others to join her, yet she had become convinced that this place of darkness was where she was to call home.
She, vaguely, remembered times before her life in this pit, but she couldn’t recall if she had been thrown in by others, willingly jumped in seeking adventure, or if she had simply lost her footing and stumbled down into the opening or maybe a combination of them all. As time passed, the reasons behind her captivity seemed irrelevant. She was where she was, assumed that she deserved to be there, and was determined to make the best of it. She attempted to make the pit as comfortable as possible. She, endlessly, scrubbed the mud floors and walls. She even etched hopeful designs of sunnier scenes within the dirt. Regardless of her efforts, it never felt like home. The pit remained dark, dirty, lonely, and dangerous.
The woman believed that there had to be something she could do that would deliver her from this despicable environment. She decided that she would form bricks from the mud and from the small pool of water, created by her many tears. She worked long and hard to create what she hoped would become the stepping-stones leading to the opening of the pit. As she shaped the bricks, she envisioned what labels she could place upon each stone: futile efforts, self-protection, blatant sin, denial, compliance, anger, betrayal, heartache, selfishness, pride, shame, despair and fear. Each label could have easily represented a few, of the many ways, that may have led her to this pit-dwelling existence.
After much effort, she was able to form enough steps that would, hopefully, hold firm as she took herself, step-over-step, up to the pit’s entrance. Though exhausted, she began to climb. Amidst much sweat, blood, and tears, she was finally able to grasp hold of the edges of the pit. She felt exhilarated and her excitement only increased as she felt the warmth of the sun upon her face. But before she could even fully rejoice at her self-directed accomplishment, an Enemy came over to the pit’s edge and stomped on her sore, bloody hands until she was no longer able to maintain her grasp.
She, rapidly, fell downward, causing the stones to crumble and further injured herself. When her descent finally ended, she realized that she had landed at an even deeper level within the pit. The crumbling bricks had created a hazy layer of dust and debris that not only blocked out the light but also soiled what little water remained. When the woman realized how far she had fallen and that there was absolutely nothing she could do, on her own, to get out of the pit, she was devastated. She sobbed, bitterly, while contemplating how the jagged stones and contaminated water may hasten her departure from this overwhelming darkness. Eventually, her body gave in to her physical and emotional exhaustion and she slept.
She awoke, hours later, with thoughts about the God who she had heard about before her entry into this dwelling place. She believed in His existence but couldn’t imagine Him caring about her, especially in her current condition. She had, long ago, came to the conclusion that He, too, felt she deserved to be in this dismal pit.
As her tears, once again, began to fall, she noticed that the dust was settling, allowing her to see a rope along the wall of the pit. The rope had, obviously, been there for quite a while and she couldn’t believe that she hadn’t noticed it there before. In the silence, she heard the words: “I’m here. I’ve been here all along. You have not been abandoned. You have not been alone. I have heard your cries and longed for you to look up and see that I have provided a way out of this darkness. My love is all you need to be rescued. Accept my gift and you will be lifted up into the light.” Through the tears and with a bit of hesitancy, the woman reached out to the rope. At her initial touch, she was effortlessly pulled from the pit.
She was so grateful to have been set free, yet God was not content to leave her standing at the edge of the shifting ground. He carried her far above and away from the place that had once held her captive. He set her feet upon a rock and explained to her that the ground was firm and steady because she had made up her mind that is where she wanted to be. She, immediately, noticed that there were others standing with her on this solid ground. They welcomed her to this remarkable place of safety.
The woman felt such appreciation, comfort and joy at her deliverance but she was still covered in dirt, blood, sweat, and tears. Within moments, God, and those whom He allowed, lovingly cleansed and bandaged each wounded area. The Lord was even able to heal the wounds that weren’t visible to anyone else.
She was amazed at the testimonies of the people who told her how God had once saved them from their own darkness, yet she was in awe of the words that came from God, Himself. She knew, without a doubt, that regardless of what life brought her way, she would never, again, be alone in a dark, slimy pit. She, whole-heartedly, clung to the words of her newfound Father, who had promised her security, stability, protection, mercy, guidance and unconditional love.
The woman is eagerly anticipating the day when this graciously loving and forgiving God will enable her to call out to others who are battling their own personal pits. This eagerness is developing, because she knows, that when that time comes, those who turn towards her voice of hope and rescue will no longer be able to see her standing before them, but they will be able to see the very essence of God.
(Written after reading Beth Moore's Get Out of That Pit)