Moving Mountains and Walking Through the Valley

Bangkok is a flat city, but don’t let the lay of the land fool you.  Everyday there are mountains to be climbed.  Each day there are minor challenges like transportation and traffic and more major stuff like attempting to order a meal with no Thai language and no assurance that they will have the ingredients to make the one dish that you can sort of say.  Sometimes the mountain path we are on seems to come to a cliff and there seems to be no way forward.  So far, we have not fallen off.

When I lived in Kazakhstan, my city was right on the edge of the mountains and often I got to take day trips and some camping trips to run around up there.  I remember one particular trip, we hiked up past the treeline – that is the elevation that trees no longer grow because it is too cold or there is not enough water or nutrients in the soil.  This photo is not from that camping trip but it gives you an idea of the mountains there.

I learned a couple of major lessons while I was hiking around in the mountains.  When you are walking through the valley, or up the side of the mountain, it is difficult to see how far you have to go.  Sometimes, the trees and bushes are so thick that you cannot see where you are going at all.  You just have to trust that if you keep going, you will get to a point where you have a better view of what is ahead, and perhaps your end goal will be in sight.  As you get close to the top of the mountain, you pass the treeline and the path has a little more room, it is easier to see where you are going.  When you get up to the top, you can see for miles!  It is exhilarating!  You look back at your journey up the side and it seems much shorter than it actually was.  From this perspective, perhaps it looks easy, or perhaps you are surprised you made it at all.

Looking around though, you notice that there is not much growing that happens on top of the mountain.

And as exhilarating as it feels, you realize that there are taller mountains in the distance.  In order to get to them, you need to go down the other side of this mountain, down through the valley where it is so much harder to walk because there is so much more growing that seems to be happening on the path you must take.

This past week, I have felt like there were a lot of mountains to climb.  At our service on Sunday, a musician was leading us through an exercise of identifying some of the mountains standing in our way of growing spiritually, or standing in our way of connecting with God.  There were some things that God spoke clearly to me about, things we need to work through together.  But He also asked me this question, “Would you rather Me move the mountain and you can walk on through on flat ground, or should we walk up this one together and see what happens?”  There are some difficult times that walking through on flat ground will bring God great glory as you testify about how he moved the mountain.  I believe that He walks with us on the flat ground after He moves the mountain.  In this instance, however, I was excited to take Him up on the invitation.  I’m excited for this journey, to see where this mountain path will lead.

What are some mountains that seem to be in ‘the way’ of connecting with God?  

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