I heard of a stressed housewife
answering her phone and relieved to hear: “How are
you darling?” “Oh, Mother,” said the housewife,
breaking into bitter tears, “I’ve had such a bad
day. The baby won’t eat, the washing machine broke
down, I haven’t had a chance to go shopping, and
besides, I’ve just sprained my ankle and I have to
hobble around. On top of that, the house is a mess
and I’m supposed to have two couples to dinner
The mother was full of sympathy. “Oh darling,” she
said, “sit down, relax. I’ll be over in half an
hour. I’ll do your shopping, clean the house, and
cook your dinner. I’ll feed the baby and I’ll call a
repairman to fix the washing machine. Now stop
crying. I’ll take care of everything. In fact, I’ll
even call George at the office and tell him to come
home and help.”
“George? Who’s George?” the other woman asked.
“George! Your husband,” the mother responded. . . .
Oh, I’m sorry. I guess I have the wrong number.”
There was a pause. Then the woman asked, “Does this
mean you’re not coming over?”
How many times in your day would you love to hear
words of encouragement? “Help is on the way!” “Just
hang in there a little longer!” or “Help is coming!”
If you’re like me, probably several times a day! I
pray and I wait. I know God hears me, but it
would be nice to know he’s on his way. Right?
Pinocchio was a created wooden marionette who
dreamed of becoming a real boy. He is one of
Disney’s loveable characters. However, the real
story of Pinocchio is a story of selfishness,
self-indulgence, and disgrace. Pinocchio was a
rascal. Disney did a huge rewrite with it in order
to make the story more inviting.
It’s originally a story of a boy who didn’t want his
father anymore so he runs away. He runs to a
carnival where it’s all about freedom and pleasure
and doing whatever you want to do. There, boys
become animals. Boys become donkeys. In fact, boys
separated from their father always make donkeys of
themselves if you know what I mean. When Pinocchio
realizes what happened to him, all he wanted was his
back. The good news for Pinocchio is that his father
was already looking for him.
In the movie Finding Nemo, it’s also
the father who crosses the widest ocean to come
looking for his lost son. This storyline seems to
sell well. A runaway or lost child; a father
desperately seeking; a reunion. Pinocchio! Nemo! Me!
God has always been like this. In the early chapters
of Exodus, while standing in front of the burning
bush, God told Moses that he had come down to rescue
his people from the hands of the Egyptians (Exodus
Ezekiel told the people God would rescue them as a
true shepherd rescues his flock from the wild beast.
He told them God would also care for their wounds,
feed their hunger, shelter them from the storm, and
renew the sick (Ezekiel 34:11–31).
We’re also told that Jesus will rescue us from our
sins, from our enemies, from death (Galatians 1:4;
Romans 7:24–25). Paul told Timothy, “The Lord will
deliver me from every evil deed, and will bring me
safely to His heavenly kingdom; to Him be the glory
forever and ever. Amen (II Timothy 4:18).
The next time you feel overwhelmed by all the
stresses and troubles of this world, stop! Close
your eyes for a minute! (I know this may sound
overly trite but just do it). Take a deep breath!
Relax. And then ask God to rescue you. Tell him all
struggle and request a rescue. Regardless of how
corny it may sound, many people experience relief
after such an exercise. Maybe, it helps to remind us
to rely on our rescuing Father. He will rescue his
people! He will rescue me. Help is on the way! Hang
Ron Otto, preaching
minister at Lincoln Christian Church