Psalm 121:1 “I lift up my eyes to the hills, where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, maker of heaven and earth.”
It’s painful when you’re trudging up a steep hill. Every fiber of your leg muscles tighten. You feel as if you won’t make it to the top. Your calf muscles silently scream, “Please stop! We can’t go another step!” Instead of looking up ahead at how much farther I have to go, I look down at the ground and literally watch my feet, one step at a time.
There’s something invigorating about finally reaching the top of a steep hill. I finally look up from the ground and realize I’ve made it! Trudging up that hill caused my heart to almost pound out of my chest. My rapid breathing finally slows down. I let out a sigh of relief. Yes! The ground ahead of me begins to level out now. It’s smooth and I can see more of what’s up ahead.
But I take a moment and turn around. Did I really just come all this way? I stand in awe of the beauty around me. Depending on the season, I might be looking at lush-green trees lining the path behind me, blue sky overhead. At other times I might be looking at autumn leaves splattered with bright orange-red colors. My absolute favorite view at the top of the hill is in winter. The snow-covered trees, glistening in the sparkling light of the sun. I breathe in the air and turn my head back in front of me.
I’ve had my share of steep hills in this life. Some of them I’d rather forget about. But I can undoubtedly say that there’s something invigorating about finally making it to the top. Those trials I thought for sure would kill my soul and squash my spirit. Yes, there are times my heart has nearly broken, fiercely pounding out of my chest. My flesh shouting, “I can’t go another step!” But when I came to the end of that challenge, my breathing slowed down. My tears and anguish turned into joyous breaths of praise. Praise to my Lord Jesus who walked beside me each step of the way.
Did I really just come all this way? I stood in awe of the beauty around me. Not physical surroundings, but the beauty of what God had done in me. The beauty of the strength He equipped me with. The beauty of his promise to never leave me or forsake me. My faith was strengthened. My hope was renewed. My love for Him was magnified. And this view was something I wouldn’t trade for anything.
READY? Where are you, dear friend? Are you gasping for breath, trudging up a steep hill? Do you feel you won’t make it to the top? Does your heart ache and you just want to stop? I encourage you to tightly grip the loving arms of Jesus. He is right beside you as you go up the hill. He is with you every step of the way. He can’t wait to show you the view at the top!
GET SET. Deuteronomy 31:6 “Be strong and courageous. Do not fear, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.”
GO! Lord Jesus, the hills of this life are hard. Sometimes I just want to give up. When I feel this way, please help me remember your truth. Help me cling to the fact that you are with me even though I can’t always see what’s up at the top. Thank you for your promise of being with me each step of the way. Amen