I thought I would share this with you, it is taken from a sermon preached last Sunday by the Revd Mark Kinder, Vicar of St Paul's and St Luke's Churches in Walsall.
As the Chilean miners were pulled out of the ground they were in no doubt that it had been a miracle. They thanked their rescuers and the President, they hugged their loved ones and they wore dirty t shirts over their smart green overalls. The t shirts said ‘Gracias Senor’ in English ‘Thank you Lord’. On the rear the text was from Psalm 95; ‘In his hand are the depths of the earth, and the mountain peaks belong to him’ (English translation). On the sleeve in bold letters the single word JESUS.
They were experienced miners, they knew the odds of rescue were tiny: 700,000 tons of rock had shifted. There were no up to date plans of the mine. They were half a mile down. They had no means of communication to the surface. Within days of the disaster they were assumed dead. The bore hole that found them was the 4th, and was only sent down because some of the families had a conviction that they were alive. The odds of finding them with a single borehole was 1 in 50. The chances of all of them surviving physically, emotionally and spiritually were remote. And yet they did!
How? By human action and spiritual strength inspired by God. Hope was kept alive through prayer; both for the searchers and for the miners in the twice daily prayer times. They talked of the battle between God (hope) and the Devil (despair) and God brought them through.
Our lives are seldom as dramatic and perilous as the fate of those men but we too face the battle between hope and despair. For many of us the long awaited spending review this coming week may feel like an impending disaster, and for some no doubt there will real worry and pain. Without being simplistic and trite, I would suggest we look to God to sustain us with his hope.