’Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just to take Him at His Word;
Just to rest upon His promise,
And to know, “Thus saith the Lord!”
Life is much like a mountain.
It is majestic.
I think of my favorite mountain. It is Mt. Rainier, as it should be for any girl from the Northwest. Viewing it from the West side of Washington is breathtaking, if not rare considering the clouds that often crowd the skies. But when the clouds clear you are brought face-to-face with the glory and majesty of such beauty that there is no other choice but to take a moment of silence and soak it up. There is no other choice beyond that than to simply worship the Creator of such astounding art.
When we dare to tarry onto the mountain we are drawn closer to the beauty and fear that are contained in such a place. For the glory of every flower, waterfall, tree and trail there is also a dangerous pass, animal, crevice or force of water. We understand the danger and treat it with holy fear and awe. We also understand that the mountain holds untold wonders, promise, places of unknown and adventure. So we venture out to explore and live!
Jesus, Jesus, how I trust Him!
How I’ve proved Him o’er and o’er;
Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus!
Oh, for grace to trust Him more!
As I have pondered our personal experiences and life lately I have noticed that it is very much like time in the mountains. There are cleared trails to follow or trecks to be explored off the beaten path. Either way, however, there is no promise of what will be experienced or found. And while it may cause us to tremble, even in the depths of the darkness and unknown we find beauty.
Chris and I have come upon a completely new stage and place of life over the course of the past couple months. We thought we knew just what was ahead. We were wrong. Totally and completely wrong.
In a very short synopsis, about a year ago we made plans to help plant a church locally in Spokane. We gave a year notice to our church at that time that we would be leaving to launch our new church with Chris as a lead co-pastor this September (2013). Chris tirelessly planned and invested in the blueprints for what we believed to be our upcoming place of home in ministry. We knew things may be tight and that there would be unforeseen events that would occur as we launched, but we were excited for the opportunity to serve as long as the Lord made clear.
We had no idea how close our time was to drawing to a close. Recently it became clear that due to circumstances and philosophy of ministry we needed to step away prior to the launch next month. We found an impasse where we thought there would be a bridge. So at this moment of life we find ourselves without a church home, a place to minister directly in a local body and without a pastoral position for my sweet husband.
Oh, how sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just to trust His cleansing blood;
And in simple faith to plunge me
’Neath the healing, cleansing flood!
So we are “here” now. Though we’re not completely sure where here is. We do know that in this time we need to set up camp for a while, gather our wits and go back to the map and our Guide to figure it all out. We are praying constantly, asking the Lord to make clear what we are supposed to do. Chris is continually applying to churches nationally. Our utmost desire is to courageously follow the Lord wherever He may lead.
This has been a time of turmoil for me personally. Between concern with where we will go from here, if we will be called away from “home” in Spokane, where we will live in the meantime, how we will provide necessities for our family, what our ministry is supposed to look like, the capacity in which the Lord desires to serve at this time and so much more, I have found myself overwhelmed with worry. Oh, and let us not forget the pregnancy hormones. I’m fairly certain that anything that seems hard in typical life is viewed as the end of the world when pregnant in the third trimester with a toddler who suddenly thinks bedtime and sleep are optional.
In this, however, we have been given such grace. Already we have seen the Lord provide in ways that are absolute astonishing. We are affirmed that as God cares for the sparrows and lilies of the field, He cares for us much more. I am reminded that in life we must always be willing to listen to the Spirit. To trust God for our provision. To live for His glory. To lay down self and our personal concerns. To commit ourselves and family fully to the will of the Lord. He is the Author of Life, the Sculptor of the mountain.
Yes, ’tis sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just from sin and self to cease;
Just from Jesus simply taking
Life and rest, and joy and peace.
More than anything, Chris and I are reminded that God is good. In this time of wandering we are given the lovely and amazing opportunity to trust Him in His goodness. To wait on the Lord for His time and place, whatever and wherever that may be. We have a new opportunity to rest in His grace and build the testimony of Who He is in our lives.
I have been soaking my heart in the book of Philippians. I am encouraged because I desire so much for our family to truly mimic the heart of Christ and the New Testament church. Paul writes profusely regarding how many live for their personal interests, not the interests of God. He spurs us on to rejoice in all circumstances and live a life worthy of the calling we have been given as believers. This is my prayer. My hope. This is the legacy I desire to leave for my children.
I want to live in such a way that in the unexpected and pruning times of life I am found worthy of the call. I want to follow Jesus, my Guide. I desire to live with awe at the beauty of what He gives at all times. That the majesty, reverence and glory of this mountain of life may to cause me to worship.
I’m so glad I learned to trust Thee,
Precious Jesus, Savior, Friend;
And I know that Thou art with me,
Wilt be with me to the end.