“I look up to the mountains; does my strength come from mountains? No, my strength comes from God, who made heaven, and earth, and mountains. He won’t let you stumble, your Guardian God won’t fall asleep.”(MSG Ps 121 v 1-3)
“I lift up my eyes to the mountains – where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the maker of the heaven and earth. He will not let your foot slip – he who watches over you will not slumber.” (NIV Ps 121 v 1-3)
Mountains have been in my thoughts quite a bit of late. But not in a positive sense….I have felt that I’m facing mountains in pretty much every aspect of my life. It has felt that in whatever area that I’m trying to move forward in, I’ve been met with resistance. It has made me question my very purpose over and over again. It has made me doubt what I felt to be my ‘calling’ or ministry….did I hear you right, God? Is this really what you want me to be doing or getting involved in…?
Then I felt God asking me whether I believed in Him more or the mountains? (Well, I would’ve thought that was obvious…the mountains, of course!!) It’s hard to trust in God when the mountains seem to be dominating your view….
And then the verse above seemed to keep playing over in my mind…Fortunately God realises that He needs to keep making His point over and over again before I finally get it! And the truth that has hit me about this verse is the fact that I was, in fact, looking to the ‘mountains’ for help rather than God. And I was believing in the evidence of them more than I was believing in God’s promises for my life.
There was a saying I came across recently that said, “You have been assigned this mountain to show others it can be moved.” It has really challenged me…especially because I keep wanting to run away from the mountains I’ve been given to move! The thing is I keep wanting to move the mountains but God keeps trying to tell me that it’s not my mountain to move. Moving those mountains in my life is not going to be done by me: it will be done by God. I need to believe in Him more, trust Him more, rather than believe in the mountains. Because, if you notice, the saying doesn’t make reference to who moves the mountain; it simply implies I’m involved in the process. But, one day, I will have a testimony to share about how God moved the mountain(s). ‘But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.’ (2 Cor 12 v 9-11)
Such a counter-cultural approach in our very self-focused society. We like to be in control. We like to control. But the reality is that we can’t always control our situation or the people around us. God doesn’t want us to think that we have to move those mountains by ourselves…because often we can’t. We can and should play our part but then leave the actual ‘moving’ to God…especially when it involves people and heart change.
But I am impatient and I get frustrated when I fail to see much ‘movement’ or change. That is something I still need to work on. This experience has been teaching me is that I still have a way to go in this area of trusting God, in allowing Him to be in total control of my life. And I still have a lot to learn about how God works…because often the answers He gives us are not the ones we’re expecting, or perhaps wanting (!), and when He moves that mountain, the view we get may not necessarily be the one we’re expecting. But He does know best and His plans are for the good of all and not just for some. So I continue to learn to trust, to learn to let go that which I can’t change while trying to continue doing what God has called me to do. And to be prepared for correction in my own life….
“Let us not become weary in doing good because at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially those who belong to the family of believers.”(NIV Gal 6 v 9, 10)
“So let’s not allow ourselves to get fatigued doing good. At the right time we will harvest a good crop if we don’t give up, or quit. Right now, therefore, every time we get the chance, let us work for the benefit of all, starting with the people closest to us in the community of faith.” (MSG Gal 6 v 9, 10)