by Pastor Mark Jordan
“My plans aren’t your plans, nor are your ways my ways, says the Lord. Just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my plans than your plans.” (Isaiah 55:8-9, CEB)
Recently I’ve spent some time thinking about the proverbial spiritual “mountain top” moments. These are the times when you feel so connected to God and others you just want them to last. Looking at events like Moses receiving the 10 Commandments on the mountain top, as well as Jesus’ Transfiguration, we realize the unmistakable truth that such moments aren’t for the sake of the mountain, but the valley below.
It is easy to get discouraged when you want to stay on the mountain, but life in the valley doesn’t cooperate. You might wonder if your experience wasn’t real, or if God’s provision doesn’t last, but neither is true.
God gives you those moments as reminders to propel you through the valley and share the greatness of God with others. As the Arabian proverb indicates, “Sunshine all the time makes a desert.” The bottom line of this is the essence of balance. We need both the highs and lows in order to appreciate them both, even though we might tend to think either should — or could — last forever.
An important visual for me as it relates to this idea goes back to my experience of the Rocky Mountains. We went way up, above the cloud cover. It was, in a word, amazing! Being that high, I couldn’t see the anything but up. When I went back down, though, the mountain top wasn’t even visible. I couldn’t see it, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t there.
God’s ways are higher than your ways, even when those times feel low. It is important to remember that God is still God regardless of what happens. Like a child playing peekaboo with a parent, the life-altering lesson is God is still there even when you can’t see Him. To learn this is to find the assurance you need to experience God on those spiritual peaks in life, but also to know He is there when you fear your faith can’t cut through the fog.
Prayer: Dear Lord, I know your ways are higher than mine. Forgive me for the times I yearn for all sunshine without the reality that balance is necessary to keep me from spiritually becoming a desert. I know you are God of the good day and the bad, so I turn to you for help that my faith can cut through the fog. I ask this in the name of Jesus, who certainly Himself experienced the highs and lows of life. Amen.