Thursday, July 07, 2011

Impossible rescue

TODAY'S SPECIAL: Isaiah 55:1-13

TO CHEW ON: "'For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways My ways,' says the Lord,
'For as the heavens are higher than the earth
So are My ways than your ways
And My thoughts than your thoughts.'" Isaiah 55:8-9

About a month ago on ListenUp (a TV news program that looks at news from a faith perspective) Rikki Ratcliff interviewed Greg Hall, the man who owned the company that drilled through the rock and found the trapped Chilean miners after an August 5, 2010 accident trapped them more than half a kilometre underground.

Even for this Texas drill specialist the project proved very difficult. The miners' exact location was unknown. The shaft was twisty because of the hardness of the rock. But after 17 days someone heard knocking and once the original shaft was completed it was discovered that all 33 miners were alive. 

Once the contact was made, the miners were showered with gifts, including items from Campus Crusade for Christ Chile. Here is an account from an October 2010 Power to change blogpost:

"... CCC Chile provided each miner with MP3 players featuring audio versions of the JESUS Film and the Bible – as well as a CCC t-shirt. We praise the Lord that during their time underground, two miners found Christ, as well as one of their wives, and others found a renewal of faith.
When the miners were rescued, one-by-one, they presented themselves in the t-shirts that read, “Thank You, Lord” and bearing the JESUS
Film Project logo.
On the back is written, Psalm 95:4  “In his hand are the depths of the earth; the heights of the mountains are his also”

Back at home in Texas, Hall continued to pray for the trapped miners and mull over ways they could be rescued. During that process he came in contact with Brandon Fisher whose Pennsylvania company owned a powerful hammering drill head. He devised a plan with that equipment, and the Chilean government approved his plan (called "Plan B" as they were simultaneously considering other rescue methods). His efforts and the efforts of his crew eventually delivered all 33 miners back to the surface on October 10, 2010, 66 days after the accident.

In his ListenUp interview Hall spared no effort in giving God the glory for the rescue's success. "You couldn't have drilled that hole," said the man who had proposed Plan A, "God must have drilled it!" Hall agreed. He recounted how God's presence had sustained him and his workers, keeping them going through harsh physical conditions, little sleep, discouraging setbacks and the very real fear that at any time the drilling could trigger a cave-in or rock shift that would kill the miners below.

As I read about God's inscrutable ways in Isaiah this morning, I can't help but reflect on the truth of that verse demonstrated in this rescue — the fact that a man of faith was chosen for the job, his reliance on God for wisdom and perseverance through the task, his finding the right technology to drill the large hole, the faith and prayers of the miners below...

What impossible situation are you facing today Even if it looks like there's no way out or through it, let the reality of God's higher thoughts and ways buoy your faith and keeping you looking up.

PRAYER: Dear God, thank You for this rescue and the willingness of Greg Hall to give You the glory for it. Please be in my situation of ____ to do the seemingly impossible. Amen.

MORE: See for yourself.

"Plan B: Chilean Miner Rescue Story" - the entire Listen Up segment telling this story (about 20 minutes total).

A news story about Greg Hall

"Chilean Miners discover Christ: choose to wear t-shirts praising God" (October 14, 2010 blog post from Power to Change)

Bible Drive-Thru

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