Hiking Up A Mountain Is A Lot Like Life

May 26, 2018
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June 26, 2018
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Hiking Up A Mountain Is A Lot Like Life


Hiking up a mountain is a lot like life.  Sometimes the anticipation of the journey that lies before us is more stressful than the trip itself. It takes preparation to make sure we have the proper equipment and are mentally prepared to tackle the task. There is so much to see as we hike. There is a lot of beauty that surrounds us on a trail as well as in life itself.  We encounter things we have never seen before, and at times the sights can take our breath away.  We get to stand in awe as to God’s majesty and glory.  There are some periods when the sun shines on the trail and illuminates it, and there are other times that the path is dark and we need to strain to see the light.  As we climb the mountain, it can challenge us and at times test our strength and endurance. Just as we feel as if we can go no further, we have no more to give, and are out of breath, we come upon a stretch that is flat and rejuvenates us, or we may even come across a small part of the trail that goes downhill. We can catch our breath, rest our legs and prepare ourselves for the next ascension.  It is a relief, and we find ourselves breathing a little more relaxed and appreciating the journey. Along the way, we encounter many obstacles and have to take a detour sometimes. There are times we come upon a downed tree and have to step over it or walk around it.  At some point, the rain comes down, and the paths that were dry now have running water causing our feet to get wet and make us uncomfortable. At times, the rain is threatening, and the winds are strong so that the raindrops feel sharp as jagged pieces of glass. It makes it hard to push ourselves up the mountain, and for each step forward, the wind pushes us backward several steps.  Then the sun returns and warms us up and dries us off.  The journey up the mountain is hard and challenging. However, when we stand atop the mountain and see the breathtaking view, the trip is well worth it. We are glad we accepted the challenge and feel the thrill of victory. There is a sense of accomplishment and relief that we made it.

Life is the same way. No one has been given a free pass to go through life without facing struggles.  Often the challenges we are about to face takes our breath away.  We defeat ourselves before we even step foot on the trail to begin the climb. Once we accept that we have a challenge before us, mentally prepare ourselves, we often find we can conquer it, and we savor the victory. Although we face many challenges, many amazing blessings also happen as we walk the trail of life.  God continues to show us His glory and majesty.  We are blessed to hold our newborn baby in our arms. We receive the promotion or get the dream job. And just as everything seems to be going in our favor, disaster strikes, our patience is tested, or we have to fight a battle we never saw coming.  Somehow, just as we reach the point where we do not feel as if we can go on any longer, we catch a break. God gives us a rainbow or beautiful sunset to remind us He is still with us.  We get to take a breather, relax a little bit and enjoy life again.  We can never get too comfortable in our current situation as we never know what is around the next bend. The unknown does make life exciting though. It is up to us as to how we decide to conquer the mountain of life. We can approach it apprehensively and fight every step, or we can confidently accept the challenge and refuse to let the mountain beat us. We can continue to steadily climb the mountain and know that when we reach the top, we will stand in awe and see God in all His glory.  At that moment we will be ecstatic that we pushed on and made it to the top.

What if life were a straight path, would we really appreciate the good things or would we just take them for granted? Would we take the time to build a relationship with God and get to see all He is capable of doing in our life? I believe God in His infinite wisdom knows that we need the challenges to draw us to Him.  We often get comfortable in life when everything is going , and we do not make enough time to spend in God’s presence. Just as climbing the mountain gives us a sense of accomplishment and we appreciate the view from the top, when we beat the odds and win a battle, we enjoy the victory. Life would be boring if it were an even flat path with no ups and downs.  We would become complacent and not have a reason to exert extra effort, draw close to God or learn to trust Him. Without the challenges, we would never see how active God is in our lives. So no matter where you are on the trail of life, know that God is walking with you. When you are struggling to reach the peak, He is cheering you on and has an outstretched arm ready to pull you up. When you are standing atop a ridge, He is proud of you for fighting the fight and staying the course.  When life is easy, and the path is straight and flat, God is present, enjoying this time with you. When you complete the journey, He will greet you with welcoming arms and a warm hug and welcome you home.

God is our trail guide on the mountain of life. He offers us solutions and tries to provide us with a plan to maneuver the mountain the most efficient way possible. He knows the mountain well and can lead us on detours or paths that are less challenging, however, we have to be willing to listen.  So instead of trying to climb the mountain of life on your own, ask God to be your trail guide. Enjoy the journey, look for the unexpected wonders, lean on God when the path gets too hard to maneuver and enjoy good conversation with our God as you walk the trail. It is not so scary when you have a capable guide to get you where you are going.

The Lord makes firm the steps of the one who delights in him; though he may stumble, he will not fall, for the Lord upholds him with his hand. Psalm 37:23-24 (NIV)


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