As you might know, I’m the father of two–6 and 1 years of age. The one year old is very close to both talking and walking. She says, “tickle, tickle, tickle” and “clean up” along with the less impressive “bye, bye”. From a walking perspective, she moves with the aid of her parents’ fingers, toy furniture and the like.

Yesterday, my wife created a reading nook for the 6 year old to read in. It backed up to an art area that’s not accessible to the 1 year old (by design). As we were working on the nook, equipping it with books and the like, we heard a faint sound of frustration. In between the chair and the book case in a space too small for even a 1 year old, we found our youngest, still trying to get through to the art area. The harder she pushed, the more stuck she became until the sounds of frustration stopped and sounds of panic started. It’s important to realize that she wasn’t in any real danger. She was learning that the harder she worked to free herself, the worse her plight became.

The first to try and help was my wife. The problem was that our little one had become so stuck that getting her out was no easy task. I arrived on the scene. From the opposite side I could see that she was wrapped around the legs of a chair and wedged next to the bookcase in such a way that her efforts would never yield her freedom. Mommy’s angle was of little help either. She wanted to help, but she simply couldn’t. Only I could help.

I reached down and pulled and twisted her little body so that in an instant she was free. Her little hand opened to show me the bait for her trap–a small discarded, crumpled sticker. I held her, not mad and her predicament, but happy to have freed her and excited to love on her.

That really is the way God is. He loves to free us from our messes, because that very process draws us closer to Him. It is in being rescued that we realize how much we need Him and how much He really wants to get us unstuck.