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Mountain Top Moments

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Before my junior year in high school I went with my church youth group on a mission trip to Colorado.  I vividly remember one Sunday morning our youth leaders maneuvered the two white fifteen passenger vans up a steeply winding road to the summit of Pike’s Peak.  We tumbled out of the vans into the thin atmosphere, sky so blue it made your eyes ache.  The piles of snow scattered about belied the warm June morning.  We came together for a homegrown church service, just a few Bible verses followed by a song.    As we chorused Amazing Grace we were one with our maker, on the top of the world, young and unashamed.  And a remarkable thing happened, those who were on the mountain with us joined the song.  The voices of our brothers and sisters in Christ, people we won’t likely meet until the next life, co-mingling their voices with ours in praise and gratitude to our savior.  As the song ended we all nodded, smiling to each other before going our separate ways. VT vaca. 2008 069

Thanks to my dad, I’ve been hiking up mountains for as long as I remember.  As children, my brother and I would trot along ahead of him, hopping over mossy logs and slippery rocks, racing to the mountain top.  Once, when I was about ten, I twisted my ankle.  My dad carried me down the mountain all the way to the car.

We still climb, but not as nimbly as before.  It would be so much easier to leave the kids home with Grandma, and sometimes we do.  But, we want to share that mountain top experience with them.  Typically, my husband wears a backpack with the toddler.  I carry the baby.   The bigger kids trot along ahead, wondering that Mom needs yet another break.  But, eventually we make it there; the whole family standing together on the top of Blue Ridge Mountain, sweaty and panting, taking in a view that makes the climb worth it.

Mountain top moments aren’t simply for, well, mountain tops. God is showing me that they happen every day, if you pause to look for them.  I had one just a few hours ago.  I rocked the baby in my arms, cuddling him long after sleep had reclaimed him, and felt so much joy and gratitude that God would bring him to me and count me worthy to love him and be the mother he needs for that moment.  These moments are God’s gifts.  He surrounds us with them, if only we take the time to see, and they carry us through when we find ourselves back in the valley.  Those valleys can be hard to navigate but we know that our daddy, be he earthly or heavenly, will be there to carry us whenever we need him.