Tears of joy will stream down their faces, and I will lead them home with great care. They will walk beside quiet streams, and on smooth paths where they will not stumble. Jeremiah 31:9
In recent years I have become to enjoy the challenge of a good hike. It has become an aspiration among friends to tackle some of the local trails, and a tradition for my husband and I as we travel.
Usually, the task can generate a number of different emotions as one navigates the climb. A number of obstacles also await at times. Some climbs are fairly easy-a nice, quiet stroll with nature, and an effortless path that allows enjoyment of all that surround us.
Some climbs are harder. Climbs that leave you huffing and puffing. In pain. Struggling just to make it to the end. There may be too many hills to climb. Sticks and rocks to climb over. Streams to leap over. And, you probably stumble and fall a time or two.
For the Lord your God has blessed you in everything you have done. He has watched your every step through this great wilderness. Deuteronomy 2:7
Until you reach the end, and see all that surrounds you. The beauty of the land He has created. It is then you realize that the challenging journey was worth it.
Life is a bit like a hiking trail, and God? He is along for the climb.
Some days are painless. They can be navigated with minimal effort, and there are no bumps along the way. It is on these days when finding moments of quiet is easy, and chaos is replaced with calm and peace. Every star is perfectly aligned. Every moment is relaxed and tranquil.
Other days? Other days take immense effort just to get through. Everywhere you turn there are jagged rocks, steep hills, and fallen trees. Obstacles keeping you from your destination. It is too tough. You want to give up. Crumble under the weight of each mountain. Avoid the challenge altogether. Hoping that it just disappears.
In each of these moments, easy or hard, something beautiful waits on the other side.
And, in each of these moments, He is with you. Walking the path alongside you. Making the climb easier to handle, since He carries you and endures each obstacle with you.
Just as you see God in the skies painted blue and the hills on the horizon, you can see him in the people you meet on your climb along the way. In the quiet mornings before the kids wake. In the chaotic moments when you have broken up another fight among siblings. In the people sent to encourage you. In those placed in your life to watch you stumble.
Just as you see God in the valleys, and the flowing streams, He can be seen in the dark moments in the middle of your uphill journey. In the tears that tumble in the dark of night. The ones that are a result of hurt, shame, guilt, or frustration.
And, He can be seen in the hope and promise that something waits on the other side of this mountain. Of this bump in the road. This obstacle that once again looms in your life. The one that seems too challenging to climb. The one in which it seems nothing worthy or beautiful can be found.
But, it’s there. Beauty. Peace. Waiting on the other side.
And, He is there. With you. For the challenging, daunting, and rewarding climb.
He leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshed my soul. He guides me along the right path. Psalm 23:2-3