"Think with me here...everybody wants to be on the mountaintop, but if you'll remember, mountaintops are rocky and cold. There is no growth on the top of a mountain. Sure, the view is great, but what's a view for? A view just gives us a glimpse of our next destination--our next target. But to hit that target, we must come off the mountain, go through the valley, and begin to climb the next slope. It is in the valley that we slog through the lush grass and rich soil, learning and becoming what enables us to summit life's next peak."
This is an excerpt from The Noticer by Andy Andrews (thanks so much for the recommendation, Robin!), a wonderful book about perspective, and about seeing life and people and the challenges we face with eternal eyes. I read this passage right after posting last week about how God (as the "driver" in our lives) takes us places where we don't necessarily want to go--up hills and down through valleys--and this passage spoke straight to my heart.
I love it when God confirms His Word and His hand in our lives!
When He leads us in a certain direction and then, as if His divine guidance weren't enough, He continues to whisper encouragements to keep on going, to keep trusting, that He's here with us, that He has a future and a hope for us, that we're never alone, that He saves every tear we shed, and that He'll never forsake us.
At a friend's encouragement last Friday, I returned to Psalm 116 and read it "anew." Loved it, so I kept on reading. Then got to Psalm 121:1 and following, and paused, and heard that gentle whisper again.
"I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come?
My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.
He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you will not slumber."
I lift my eyes to the hills in my life and know with certainty that my help comes from the Lord, and that (to paraphrase in a modern sense) He'll never fall asleep at the wheel. I'm safe in His care, no matter what lies ahead. And so are you if you're trusting in Him.