In the last couple of months, God has gifted me a few incredibly beautiful mountain top moments. I don’t mean your typical Colorado “mountain top.” I mean, larger than the mountain in this picture, and way higher than the altitude in which we were flying.
For a quick second, I thought we were still driving past a little hill on the Malawian terrain we just flew away from. (I know what you are thinking, but in my own defense, my heart was still in Malawi). The guy sitting next to me was anxious to tell me this was, in fact, Mount Kilimanjaro. He had traveled this route between Blantyre, Malawi and Addis Ababa, Ethiopia many times for work, and had never seen the mountain tops this clearly. (Kind of a big deal!)
So I blinked a few times and realized that this was in fact a tiny glimpse of this HUGE mountain that we were flying over. Mount Kilimanjaro, the tallest free-standing mountain in the world, ascends 19,341 feet above sea level. Just for perspective, our plane was flying over 40,000 feet in the air.
In these past couple of months, the “larger than 40,000 feet tall mountain top moments” God gifted me—while in Malawi, and upon my return to Kansas—were filled with His promises, love, guidance, truth, hope, and above all else, God Himself. I felt His presence more than I had ever before. He showed me hurts in my past that He had healed. He showed me glimpses of my future. So, how could I come down from this mountain, His Mountain? How could I ever be defeated after seeing/feeling/experiencing all of this goodness?
During last weekend’s sermon—Family Words: Hurtful or Life Giving?—I listened, wrote notes, and agreed with Pastor Adam to not say hurtful words and continue to use encouraging words (just like our passage reads today in Ephesians 4:29). I even repeated our sermon series theme verses three times with the congregation. “Let the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be pleasing to you, O Lord….”
Then, the very next evening, I yelled at my mom. Nothing about my tone, words, approach, delivery or exit were encouraging or loving. I went to bed angry—angry that she didn’t understand, and angry that I had had acted that way. (Spoiler alert: I am not a perfect Christian!) Ephesians 4:27 reads: “for anger gives a foothold to the devil.” I had certainly allowed the devil take hold my life that evening.
Thankfully, I woke up the next morning with my eyes fixed on God. His promises were waiting at my doorstep as a gift for the new day.
God reminded me of the “larger than 40,000 feet tall mountain top moments” I had so deeply experienced just recently. Even before I had fallen off my recent mountain top moments, he was there to guide me back up my next mountain. God keeps guiding me with grace, peace, love, forgiveness, humility, and—again, always—GRACE which never stops.