My Ink Dance

Discovering Extraordinary Grace in an Ordinary Life

Why I Don’t Want a Mountaintop Faith

Imagine you’re on the top of a mountain. You look over the world sprawling below, colors and shapes blending into a beautiful tapestry. It is amazing.

Now think for a moment. How did you get there? Did you climb? Did you fly? How are you getting down?

Mountaintops are gloriously beautiful. I love the wonder and quiet awe. They build my faith so much. But we can’t stay there. So what happens to our faith when we come down?

My husband and I went for a hike when we were in New Hampshire years ago. I’m not good at climbing up steep inclines, so I chose what seemed the least rigorous in the area: Red Hill. I figured I could handle a hill. Little did I know New Hampshire’s definition of a hill was different from my own.

We began our hike in the early afternoon, planning an hour or two before we’d be back to the hotel. Setting out, everything seemed o.k., until we left the parking lot.

We were too close to the hill to see it for what it really was, a mountain. So we made our way up. We walked and walked watching the scenery and chatting until breathing became more important. We were determined we were close so we kept going. I may have been passed by a 70 year old. Snowflakes fell gently on our bare arms. The treetops looked so close and we kept on.

Concern rose about whether we’d make it there and back before dark. As we contemplated turning around the lovely woman who passed us had been to the top and was now coming down the hill. I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. She must have seen the look on my face and offered a reassurance that we were almost there. I smiled weakly and we kept going.

Sure enough we made it to the top. The view was beautiful and we enjoyed looking in wonder at God’s beauty. Our journey down went much more quickly and we were back at the hotel just before dinner.

Mountaintops are great. Ours sure was beautiful. But when we talk about that trip do you know what we talk about? The journey.

We spend 5% of our time at the top. I want to see God in the 95%. Click To Tweet

We laugh at our inexperience and my complaining. We remember the snowflakes and the delightful woman 35 years my senior. We tease about who wanted to turn around and wondering why they called it a hill.

When we think about our faith I’d rather have good in the journey than the destination, the ordinary over the extraordinary. We spend 5% of our time at the top. I want to see God in the 95%.

There is no denying that the mountaintop is great. The rest is ordinary, one foot in front of the other, climbing up, walking down, resting in the valley. I want God in those places. 

 

If we wait to have faith only when we’re on the mountaintop, we miss God in the journey. Fining our faith along the way, we are built up all the time. Thankfully, He’s there for both.

Just don’t wait to believe until you’ve reached the mountaintop. He’s there every step (or stop) along the way.

The rest is ordinary, one foot in front of the other, climbing up, walking down, resting in the valley. I want… Click To Tweet

Sharing words with these great writers today!

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About Becky Hastings

I am emotional and logical. I am strong and dependent. I am a juxtaposition of head and heart exploring it all through writing. And in all my mixed-up ways I am loved. I’m here to tell you that you are, too. Just the way you are.

18 Replies

  1. I have similar stories about rivers, mountaintops, and roads! IT IS THE JOURNEY!

    1. Becky Hastings

      I love those river, mountain, road, journey stories!

  2. I love this Becky! You are so right; the journey is just as important as the mountaintop. Beautiful and encouraging post. Visiting you here at Porch Stories 🙂

    1. Becky Hastings

      So glad you’re here Mandy! The journey is no further or closer to God than those mountaintops!

  3. Ohhh yes, dear this is so right. I love your way with words. A great storyteller. I LOVE the percentage quote…such a great way of putting it!

    1. Becky Hastings

      Thanks Meghan!

  4. It’s so easy to focus on the tough stuff and forget that God is there through it all, isn’t it? It’s true that we shouldn’t walk by Faith, just when everything is looking pretty, but all the time.

    1. Becky Hastings

      Amen!

  5. Becky! So funny I just wrote about the mountain top too!! Different angle because I was talking about appreciating the journey differently once you get there. I love how you highlight the journey and how you can see God all throughout!! My husband and I had such a similar experience but in Shenandoah instead- 70 year old hikers passing us and all! Thankful for iPod insight today.

    1. Becky Hastings

      I’m glad I’m not the only one who gets passed by 70 year old hikers! 🙂

  6. I love, love, love this! I’m constantly reminding myself that even Moses came down from the mountain. They are beautiful and inspiring, but we were never meant to stay there.

    1. Becky Hastings

      You’re so right Heather!

  7. So true! If we don’t find Him in the journey, the mountain top will only be a temporary high and we’re in danger of wandering off when we come down.

    1. Becky Hastings

      Donna, there is so much wisdom in your words! What an important reminder; thank you for sharing!

  8. So good. I love Eugene Peterson’s description of every day life: “our sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life” — this is where the work of the Christian life is done!

    1. Becky Hastings

      Yes, yes, yes!!!

  9. I love that it’s not about the mountaintop, but the journey. I used to live in Massachusetts, so I’d call the mountains there “hills.” We spend a lot of time in Colorado now. This summer, with my son, I’m planning to climb a real mountain – one of the 14ers. 14,000ft. It will be a climb of over 3,000 elevation. That will be quite a journey.

    1. Becky Hastings

      Ahhh!!!!I think I’ll stick to the hills. Although I’d love to see the mountains someday! 🙂

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