You formed the mountains by Your power and armed Yourself with mighty strength.
This past week my family and I spent our summer vacation in the beautiful Rocky Mountains of Colorado. The highlands have always held a special place in my heart and I can’t think of anywhere I would rather be. I spent the early years of my life surrounded by mountain peaks dotted with white horned sheep in the beautiful state of Alaska, so for me when I’m surrounded by mountains it feels as if I’ve come home.
This last week, my husband and I did a “black diamond” hike up Shrine Mountain Pass. Having not made getting in shape a priority, combined with the high elevation, and no food in our pack, we were in for a difficult and challenging hike. There were many times when I wanted to throw in the towel, give up, turn around and not look back but whether it was just plain stubbornness or the promise of the spectacular vistas that lay just up ahead that kept me pressing on, I’m not sure. But nonetheless, I kept putting one foot in front of the other.
We hiked past fields of wild flowers, craggy rocks, a trickling brook and windswept trees on our climb to the top. The trail was narrow, with jagged roots and rocks making the way hazardous to our health if we weren’t careful. Always with the promise that the end was just around the corner.
FINALLY, we reached the top. I dragged myself up the last few steps and collapsed on the rocky ground. The view was all that I had hoped it would be.
Spectacular. Breathtaking. Incredible.
I gazed up at the sky and listened to the desolate sound of the wind as it gusted and whipped around me. My husband had left to climb the final crest and I was alone with my Maker on top of the world.
In reflecting back on that hike, I can’t help but realize how much life is like that trek in so many ways. Isn’t our journey really made up of mountain top experiences with deep valleys in between? Most of our time is spent walking through the valley and traversing the narrow paths on our way to the top. Once we reach the top, we enjoy it for a few quick wonderful moments and then we must start down once again.
Life has its rugged paths; the disappointments, the unexpected news, unanswered prayers that can so easily trip us up and cause us to take our eyes off of the goal. Scattered in between are those moments when we get a little glimpse of heaven on earth. Then difficulties and struggles come agin and we want to give up – life is too hard. It’s all to easy to throw in the towel and surrender to the pain and exhaustion of the trail.
But remember, there is Beauty along the way, Joy in the journey, and Hope in what is yet to come.
Psalm 37.34a (NLT) says, “Put your hope in the LORD and travel steadily along His path.”
Some day we will reach our TRUE SUMMIT and life will BE A MOUNTAIN TOP EXISTENCE not a momentary experience! So Press on! Don’t give up! Heaven is right around the bend!