Rescue 9-1-1

I finally was going to learn how to surf! Pacific Beach, California, my friend Esmeralda and I took her boards down the cliff to the ocean, stopping in the sand just a few yards from the water. Surf board, check. Wax, check. Cool surf shirt, check. We were ready to go!

After five lengthy minutes of instruction, Esmeralda deemed me knowledgeable in the art of surfing and off she went, confident that, with a little time and space, I would soon master the skills necessary for surfing… or at least survival.

After figuring out which end was right side up, and several mouthfuls of saltwater later, I managed to get to where the waves were to be caught (whatever that meant!). Flipping, slipping, sliding, somersaulting, and face-planting moments later I found myself suddenly swept away on a wave! I was riding a wave… a real wave, and on top this time! The wind was whipping my hair back, the board was cutting the water and the speed was accelerating by the second… it was incredible! With all fours on the board, I felt like a real pro! And then I opened my eyes, and suddenly the thrill turned to chills. First thing I realized was that there were no other surfers, and then, as I looked at my soon-to-be destination, I realized why. I was headed straight for the rocks-a group of ominous, dagger-looking, bully rocks that had a reputation for eating surfers alive if they dared come near. Panic set in as I careened helplessly towards a lot of pain. I needed to be rescued!

Ever been there? Ever needed to be rescued…saved from disaster, or pain, from others, or from yourself? There are so many predicaments in which we find ourselves-overwhelming temptations, family dramas, relationship issues, work struggles, school challenges… and we don’t know what to do. We feel helpless, hopeless, trapped, in trouble with no way out. We’re about to hit the rocks at tremendous speed, and we need to be rescued, now!

Enter Psalms 18… enter God. “The Lord is my deliverer… I call to the Lord… and am saved from my enemies… In my distress I called to the Lord; I cried to my God for help. From his temple he heard my voice… He reached down from on high and took hold of me; he drew me out of deep waters…he rescued me because he delighted in me…”
This is the kind of God we have on our side. When we’re in trouble, God rescues us. It doesn’t matter how many times we’ve done it, or how awful we are, when we call on God, he will respond. God is the one who throws us the life jacket, the life-line, to get us out, or around, or through the temptation, or struggle, through whatever situation that has us in need of help. Psalms 18 makes it clear that, not only does he deliver us, but he rescues us from our entanglements and set us in a “spacious place” with him… why? Because he delights in us! Now that is indeed a God most worthy of praise!


1. Recall a time when God “saved” you in the past… when you were rescued, helped through a hard time. Thank him again for that right now… for being a God who rescues because he delights in you.

2. From what in your life are you needing deliverance today… from what or who do you need to be rescued? Picture that situation, that foe, that place of swirling water and rocks in your life and then read Psalms 18.

Orignally published at God Encounters Blog

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