By contrast, the valleys or troubles of life help those in the world's darkness recognize the light and hope of God. They also remind those who have followed the light and emerged from the darkness, of God's undeserved love and mercy. Christ is the light of the world (Jn 1:4-12). He is the only way God has provided for man to escape the darkness and enter His light. The joys of relationship with God are unattainable to those who remain in the world's darkness. The bright, shimmering peaks of Lordship Mountains tower over the valleys of Godless living. Those mountains can only be seen by those who follow Christ out of the darkness and climbed by those who live by trust and faith in God.
Valley dwellers stumble blindly in the darkness (Prov 4:9), often only vaguely aware of God, as the reason for Christmas and Easter church services. Still, God loves the valley dwellers and shines the light of his truth and love among them. Some valley dwellers see and respond to God's light and truth. They accept Jesus Christ as their Savior and are Spiritually reborn and often amazed that they never saw God's Lordship Mountains before. Easily distracted by the world's problems and priorities, others quickly forget about God's light. They cannot even see God's Lordship Mountains.
Salvation and eternal life are secure for those who accept Christ, but that is only the start of the relationship God seeks. Christians must climb higher to grow in faith, joy and power! Baby Christians are often reluctant to leave the familiar darkness and start climbing. They are easily blinded by what they see as the obstacles and difficulties of unscalable walls. They desire faith and a closer relationship with God, but keep forgetting to climb! Baby Christians live 'roller coaster lives,' filled with the ups and downs of revisiting their decision to obey God, with each new circumstance.
When Abraham and Lot separated, Lot chose the fast-paced, worldly life of Sodom. Abraham remained in the desert, depending only on God for his life and truth (Gen 13:11-12). Although Lot was saved when Sodom was destroyed, little is known of his faith or relationship with God. Abraham believed God and is known as "the father of all faith" to this day (Gen 17:5-9, Rom 4:13-16). Lot's 'climb into the mountains' as he fled Sodom, may have been one of his few climbing experiences. His wife quickly grew tired of the climb and disobeyed God's command to not look back. She had grown too comfortable with city living to leave without a longing, farewell glance at Sodom (Gen 19:17-26).
God seeks sons and daughters who are 'mountain climbers' and will live with him in the mountains. He is not merely seeking slaves or servants who will 'work for him' in the valleys (Jn 8:34-36, Gal 4:7). One cannot live in the mountains and valley at the same time (Mat 6:24). Even Jesus was unable to obey God and still please men. God's sons and daughters must separate themselves from the world and sin to reach God's mountains (2 Cor 6:17-18). Christ will guide us, but we must climb steadily onward, higher and higher, regardless of the smog and difficulty.
The view in the mountains is spectacular. The air is fresh and clean and life is good. One can view the dark valleys of life with a sense of relief and freedom. True life comes only from relationship with God, not from 'fast living' in dark valleys. Let us remain faithful to God's purpose, place our hope and faith in God alone and climb upward, without growing weary (Is 40:31). (#110)