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Trapped in a Cave and Rescued from Above

Laura Demarest recalls what it was like for a group to be trapped deep underground in a dark, flooded cave in Indiana and the relief they felt when rescued:

In the end, a team of fellow cavers and trained rescue personnel came to our aid as the waters were receding. They brought us food, water, warm clothes, and smiles. One later commented that when he reached our little hovel, the smell was fantastically terrible from all of us clustered together for so long in our stinky cave gear. But he said it was the best thing he had ever inhaled.

We made the long trek out of the cave, all of us under our own power, but greatly buoyed by the rescuers who assisted along the way. It took at least four hours of exhausted wading, scrambling, and crawling for all of us to exit. We were greeted on the surface by relieved and jubilant family and friends, bright lights, medical personnel, fried chicken, and a very inviting campfire. It was surreal. I wanted to celebrate with friends. I wanted to go home and sleep forever.

So that we would be where Jesus is, he first came to be where we are, to rescue us. I’m certain that the world he entered literally stunk way more than the heavenly splendor he left behind. He came to be with us, and he gave temporary comforts and healing to those he found. They were temporary because they were only meant to point to the party awaiting us up at the surface. Friends and family, fried chicken, a warm fire: they are only the beginning of imagining what he has prepared for those who love him.


Laura Demarest, “What It’s Like to Be Trapped in a Cave,” The Washington Post (7-6-18); submitted by Paul May, Pastor, Ashburn, Virginia

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