I was watching an episode of the Simpsons called ‘Bart gets an Elephant’. In a scene towards the end Homer falls into a tar pit. He struggles to free himself but only sinks deeper. He decides to reach in with his right arm to pull out his right leg, then decides to reach in with his left arm to pull out his left leg – all while getting himself even more stuck and sinking further into the tar. He finally decides to reach in with his face to pull out the rest of his body – and becomes completely submerged.
If you’re a fan of the Simpsons then you appreciate the humor in Homers stupidity.
It occurred to me however that every single one of us is just like Homer.
We are stuck in the sludgy tar pits of sin and our only hope of escape is outside intervention.
Homer is rescued by Bart’s pet elephant named Stampy, who reaches in with his trunk and yanks Homer out of the sticky sludge. Just the same, it takes someone on the outside, someone not stuck in the tar pits of sin – someone secured on a firm foundation who can reach in and pull us out. Yet in our sin we continue to reject help from the outside and insist on pulling ourselves out by reaching in with our face.
We can continue to squirm and sink deeper into our sin or we can reach out to Jesus – Who is lovingly waiting with his hand stretched out to rescue us.