My feet crunched on the rocky path that wound through the valley as I contemplated the mysterious embrace of a dense fog; and that’s when it happened – I fell into a pit. It wasn’t a pretty fall either; it was a face first nose dive into a deep, dark hole filled with all sorts of creepy-crawlies that wanted to eat me alive.
I stumbled to my feet and assessed the situation. I tried to remember those glorious days spent at the top of the mountain, but the effort was like trying to capture the fog between my fingers. Was I really on the mountaintop just a few short weeks ago? Maybe, like the fog, it was a dream or a deception.
Was the fog there for me to enjoy its beauty or was it there to blind me to the pit? Is it foe or friend? I’m not sure, but I know this pit is the last place I want to be, and the fog brought me here.
I shake my head, trying to jog loose the mental cobwebs, as well as the real cobwebs I can feel clinging to my face. Ugh! A shudder races up my spine as I try not to imagine what the inside of the pit looks like. For this moment, I am thankful for the darkness.
At the same time, I long for the light. My memory is clear and I know that my time on the mountaintop was real. It’s dark in the pit. Still, I close my eyes and remember the light I saw from the mountain. Bright and clear, I could feel its rays on my closed eyelids. A warmth begins to embrace me as I remember the peace I felt high above life’s challenges and struggles.
I don’t want to open my eyes because I know nothing will have changed. I’ll still be stuck in a cold dark pit with no way out. Something has to change. I have to be brave.
I will myself to open my eyes. The pit is still dark, but I am at peace. I’m reminded of the words of King David of old. “I waited patiently for the Lord to help me, and he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the pit of despair, out of the mud and the mire. He set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along (Psalm 40:1-2, ESV).”
If God could lift David out of the pit, He can lift me out of my pit too. I know this, yet the darkness is so strong and the creepy-crawlies nip at my ankles. I know it won’t be long before they get a taste for me and devour my flesh.
I have to make a decision. I can’t go on doing nothing, standing in fear, hoping I will be rescued. God help me. I can’t, I just can’t Lord.
He gives me courage to cry out for help.
He sends a friend to call down into the pit and ask if I’m okay.
He gives me the courage to answer honestly. I’m hurt and I need help.
He reminds me I’m not alone. My hand brushes my pocket and I feel my phone. That’s it! I call out and let others know I’m stuck in a pit and ask for help.
I notice the creepy-crawlies have left my ankles alone. The fog is lifting and light is seeping into my pit. I look up and see concerned faces circling the pit, arms reaching down to pull me out.
It’s too far, I can’t reach their grasps.
What’s this? I feel the Lord lifting me up, up to the arms of my friends and family. Hands grab me and pull me out of the pit and into their waiting embraces.
They were there for me all along, but it was too dark to see them. They weren’t the only ones there.
A strong hand grasps me around the shoulders. He makes sure my feet are set on solid ground and He steadies me as I continue on my walk through the valley.
The fog has melted away and the rocky path is straight. I’m not afraid anymore. I know I will make it through this valley because I’m not alone. I was never alone, but I made the mistake of thinking the valley was the most difficult part. The pit took me by surprise.
There may be more pits in this valley, but now I know how to get out. And now you, my friend, know how to get out as well. If you find yourself tipped headlong into a pit, remember that you’re not alone. Wait patiently for the Lord to help you; let your heart cry out to Him. Reach past the fear and tell someone you’ve fallen in a pit. Ask for help and be amazed at what the Lord will do.
“He has given me a new song to sing, a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see what he has done and be amazed.
They will put their trust in the Lord.”
- Psalm 40:3, ESV