Tuesday, October 09, 2007

In Other Words: Valley Living

"We are not built for the mountains and the dawns and aesthetic affinities, those are for moments of inspiration, that is all. We are built for the valley, for the ordinary stuff we are in, and that is where we have to prove our mettle."

~ Oswald Chamber~

When Craig and I were married almost 16 years ago, Bishop Miller said something that I have never forgotten. "The will of God will never take you where the grace of God can't keep you."

On that day I was so caught up in the "idea" of marriage and being in love that I don't think I really heard him. However, over the years, with every trial and difficulty, those words come flooding back.

At the age of 19 I was so "full" of love for my fiance and the "will of God" for our lives. I don't think I really believed that embracing His will would also mean embracing His grace through the good times (that was easy)- and the difficult.

Valley living doesn't sound very tempting to a Christian. No, we desire to leap from mountain top to mountain top with our "hinds feet," right? After all, mountain top living is where we can be closest to God, where He meets us, where we experience "new levels."

Of course I am being idealistic. As wonderful as it would be to do nothing more than bask in His every miraculous sunset, He has created us for so much more. Part of that "more" is this life we live. Life, every single day of it, is a precious gift He has given to us. Some days come wrapped much prettier than others, but each come with the same of amount of time and potential. It is up to us what measure of each we will use.

In my opinion, life begin on the mountain, it begins with the miracle of life. How much higher can you get than when you witness the gift of new life? I am speaking both physically and spiritually. The awesomeness of seeing a life brought into this world takes your breath away. Witnessing a lost soul give their life to Christ is just a beautiful. However, after those babes leave the delivery room and go home, LIFE begins.

The euphoria that accompanied the baby's first lusty cry, or the tears that flowed down the face of the new believer are still beautiful memories, but those "memories" will not sustain them in the valley. Valley living demands commitment, character building, and a tenacious spirit. Why you ask, do we have to be so strong in the valley?

Ah, because without building our strength in the valley, how will we ever be strong enough to climb the next mountain top and experience the inspiration of our heavenly Father once again? Those moments of inspiration, those moments are the grace Bishop Miller was talking about. Those moments serve as memories of Who God is and what He is capable of when His will requires sacrifice and processing in the valley.

What I accomplish on the mountain is nothing more than a direct result, a testimony of what God has done in me in the valley. The valley cultivates me, the mountain top memories encourage me, and the desire to experience another inspiring moment with God on the mountain top compels me to climb higher, even when it is difficult.

Don't get me wrong though, I have had many life changing and intimate moments with the Lord in the valley. That is what is so incredible about His grace, it keeps us when we are high, and when we are very low.

His amazing grace runs to us like a daddy runs to his baby girl when she falls down and skins her knee. He kisses away the tears and swings her about in a circle lifting her up higher and higher until she forgets her scrapes and bruises and throws her arms around his neck.

I have totally gotten off topic here, but I jut felt this overwhelming rush of His love and well, I just had to share.... how good He is... on the mountain, in the valley, in life....

Please visit other In Other Words thoughts at Laurel Wreath... Thanks for hosting this week!

Love & Blessings,


Denise said...

Thanks for being a sweet blessing.

Laurel Wreath said...

Tara God is good. Thank you for sharing your heart. I love the description of giving birth, then when you go home Life begins ;) So true.

Thank you for participating!!