A couple friends of mine, Jeff Goins and Shaun Groves, are currently in Uganda with a great organization called Compassion International. They are part of a group of bloggers working with Compassion to celebrate and tell the story of all that God has done in 5 years of working in that country. (You should follow the whole team on Twitter)
I’ve worked alongside Compassion for years now and sponsor a child myself. If you’re currently not sponsoring one of these awesome kids through Compassion, then now is the perfect opportunity. With this trip, their team has set a goal of sponsoring 400 kids, and you can be a part of making that goal a reality.
Thinking about these guys and the experience they are embarking on, led me to remember a trip I made to Tibet many years ago.
I’ll spare you the details, but one of my fondest memories from Tibet was the experience of sitting there atop the highest peak in the village where I was staying. The Tibetan Plateau is often referred to as “The Roof of the World,” so you can imagine the view I had in those sacred moments.
I’ve never forgotten the vision I had atop that mountain. The sky was so clear I could see for miles and miles. There appeared to be tiny villages one after another, scattered all throughout the valley below.
What a truly awesome perspective to behold.
I still refer back to those memories from time to time, and to this day they still teach me a great a lesson.
We were not created to live atop the mountain.
It was obvious to me, sitting there on that peak, where life could be found. On that ledge, I was alone, I was isolated. But I could see all across the valley, one village after another, full of life.
The air was so thin, yet so pure, I easily found myself struggling to catch my breath after the climb. Listening to the team leaders’ wisdom, I made sure to bring some water and a few snacks with me that day. “It’s too dangerous, attempting to climb without the right provisions,” they said. And of course they were right.
Do you know what I found up on that mountain? Nothing. Nothing apart from what I brought up of course.
Aside from the well-worn path other travelers had made, there was nothing but me, the view, and the glory of God. Were I to get thirsty or hungry up there, I would have been in trouble had it not been for the little things I brought with me.
I may have traveled up that mountain with just a few supplies, but I sure did come down with a whole lot more.
My journey has led me to experience numerous valleys since those weeks spent in Tibet. I’ve agonized as I’ve trekked through them, wanting to relive that mountain top experience again. In the silence and in the hard providence of those valleys, I’ve looked back, wanting to once again behold that majestic view.
In some ways, life was simpler there. My vision was cut and dry. Things were segmented and fit in their little pockets better from that angle. On top of that mountain, it was easy to see what’s ahead, down below, and around the bend.
I imagine that’s a bit of what Moses felt, after spending 40 days atop that mountain. I hear him thinking how much he longed to return to that glorious beauty, that marvelous wonder.
But the fact is we were not created to live on the mountain.
In the valley there is life, and in the valley is where your invitation stands before you. (tweet and share)
That invitation doesn’t sit idle though, it’s calling your name. It’s passionately pursuing you. Eldredge speaks of this in The Sacred Romance.
Similar to how my friends left the country and are pursuing those in Uganda, the Father came down in pursuit of you.
How will you answer? How will you respond?
What happens next, sets the course of your life.
Have you had an experience like mine in Tibet? What lessons did it teach you?
Share in the comments below!