Just a Few More Minutes

01/20/2011


A friend once asked me how you deal with crashing from a spiritual “high” after having a “mountaintop experience” with God.  Our “mountaintop experiences” are simply times of renewal and restoration, but they often take place when we have opportunity to step away from “real life” for a conference, retreat, or even just an extended time of quiet with the Lord.

 As I thought about Moses’ time on the mountain with God, there was no doubt that He had a renewed and greater intimacy with God as even his glowing face gave testimony to it. A lot of times we want to walk away from our times like that into a blissful atmosphere where the kids are instantly obedient, we have infinite patience with all the interruptions in our lives, and we walk in a godly manner through every obstacle. But just as Moses came off the mountain to be faced with massive sin in the camp and chaos all around him, so are we also faced with the trials of life. 

I am now convinced that God gives us these times of renewal so that we CAN come down and face the chaos and sin that confront us, not so that we can have a blissful existence.  We surely would forget just how needful we are of God if that were the case. 
Jenni Cox,
teacher/counselor at Miracle Mountain Ranch,
Spring Creek, Pennsylvania (www.mmrm.org)

Have you ever had a “mountain-top” experience and then wondered why you’re back in the valley the next day? Things were so great atop the mountain! After a long climb, you finally reached the summit and drew those deep, cleansing breaths. You could see farther than even before and your thoughts were as clear as the mountain air. The trees that impeded your progress earlier became toothpicks and the river you crossed looked like a silver ribbon. You wished you could stay there forever.

This is what Peter felt on the mountain, too.

After six days Jesus took with him Peter, James and John the brother of James, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. There he was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as the light. Just then there appeared before them Moses and Elijah, talking with Jesus. Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good for us to be here. If you wish, I will put up three shelters—one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.”–Matthew 17:1-4 (NIV)

Peter didn’t want the moment to end. We all want to bottle up these moments so we can drink from them the next time we get thirsty. But Jesus didn’t give Peter the go-ahead to try to “contain” himself and the prophets.

Jenni’s father-in-law William Cox experienced many Spirit-filled Sundays followed by difficult, arid Mondays. “This is where the rubber meets the road!” he would say. He believed that God would often give him the chance to practice what he preached the day before.

We’re not meant to live on the mountain and the fact is that we need the valleys, too. Phillip Keller writes in A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23: “the rancher chooses to take his flock into the high country by way of the valleys (because) the richest feed and best forage is to be found along the route.”

Today you might find yourself on the mountaintop, in the valley, or somewhere in-between. Perhaps you’ll even experience a little bit of each! But while the terrain may change, your Guide does not. Jesus knows the way because he walked the path first. Trust him to lead you today!

Let’s pray.

Father, please give me enough mountaintops to sustain me and enough valleys to test me. Walk ahead of me, beside me or behind me as you so choose, for the path that I tread is not mine but yours. Thanks you for moments of clarity when I feel your presence and for moments of desperation that remind me how much I need you. Thank you for the Good Shepherd who cares for me and thank you that he trusts me to care for others. And thank you for loving me just as I am. Amen.

 

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There are 2 comments

AMEN!

Deb
January 20, 2011 - 20:23

Kent,
Thanks for the devotional. Well written and much common sense in it. A good reminder that we do have very special times with the Lord and other times He seems distant, but I know this is not so. We operate so much on feelings. Blessings

Rich Bushong
January 20, 2011 - 20:10
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