Here's the thing...
So often we desire mountaintop experiences... times when we are floating on a cloud with God and all is well. Times when everything seems to be going right and "life is good". The problem with this is that we can't stay on the mountain.
Oswald Chambers says it best in today's devotional thought,
"We have all had times on the mount, when we have seen things from God's standpoint and have wanted to stay there..."
But then he goes on to say this:
"... but God will never allow us to stay there. The test of our spiritual life is the power to descend; if we have the power to rise only, something is wrong."
As I read that this morning it made me stop and take it in.
Then I thought... how interesting it is that one of the ways the devil tempted Jesus was to take Him up to the mountain...
How tempting it would be for us to stay on the mountain- never facing difficulties, never having adversity or struggle or trouble...
But how much would we really need God then? The reality is- we wouldn't. And as long as we are on the mountain, there are others in the valley who desperately need to know God's love and redemption.
We can't live for Christ from the mountaintop. Chambers goes on to say this about being on the mountain,
"... a man only gets there (on the mountain) in order that afterwards he may get down among the devil-possessed and lift them up. We are not built for the mountains and the dawns and aesthetic affinities, those are for moments of inspiration, that is all. We are built for the valley, for the ordinary stuff we are in, and that is where we have to prove our mettle."
And then he adds these harsh (but so true) words...
"Spiritual selfishness always wants repeated moments on the mount."
How selfish are we when we desire to separate ourselves from the valley?
If the two greatest commandments are to Love God and Love people... in order to really love people, we need to meet them where they are, help them through their circumstances, disciple them, BE CHRIST to them... and THIS happens... in the valley.
This past Sunday in church we sang a beautiful song that has been stuck in my head ever since and I want to share it with you...
The phrase that I keep hearing over and over from that song is this:
"Jezu, mwen bezwen prezans Ou kounye a..." which translates as this:
"Jesus, I need Your presence now."
How often do we say those words? How often do we desire His Presence so much that we ask Him to come NOW?
Do you know when we DO ask?
When things are difficult.
When times are tough.
When life is hard.
I am not saying that we should wish calamity upon ourselves, nor am I saying that we should "go looking" for trouble... but what I am saying is that if our lives are not difficult, and if we are sitting on the mountain praying that God would keep us from all struggle and difficulty, there is something very wrong.
God wants us to go down to the valley.
To be a disciple of Jesus Christ is HARD work... and we NEED Him.
Chambers adds these words (in tomorrow's devotions- sorry I am jumping ahead!):
"... it is in the valley that we have to live for the glory of God. We see His glory on the mount, but we never live for His glory there."
Through Him we have the Power to Descend.
If we would only be willing...