Mountain Views

 "The next day, after they had come down from the mountain, a huge crowd met Jesus. A man in the crowd called out to Him, 'Teacher look at my boy, who is my only son. An evil spirit keeps seizing him, making him scream. It throws him into convulsions so that he foams at the mouth. It is always hitting and injuring him. It hardly ever leaves him alone. I begged your disciples to cast the spirit out, but they couldn't do it.' " Luke 9:37-40

 

I remember the first time I went to the top of Pikes Peak in Colorado Springs. From that summit, I could see miles in every direction. They had special telescopes that enabled you to look down and pick out various places around the city and surrounding area. One of the places I found was the facility I worked at. It was a place where I had, and still had, my share of trials. Sometimes those trials seemed overwhelming. Yet from that great height, that place and those pressures seemed very small and insignificant. Funny how the highlands can so change our impressions of the lowlands. 

A friend recently said, "We need to have mountain views in the deepest valleys." Such was the way Christ lived, and continues to live. The above passage of scripture takes place the day after Peter, James and John's sharing in the experience of the transfiguration of Jesus. They had seen Him in His glory, and heard the voice of the Father confirming the identity of Christ, saying "This is My beloved Son....listen to Him." They were literally in the atmosphere of heaven. Yet, just a day later, they were down on the valley floor, arguing with religious leaders, and powerless to help a young boy trapped in darkness. They were no longer living in the atmosphere of the Kingdom, but of the valley. They had lost their "mountain view." They saw everything from the perspective of the lowland. How easily you and I do the same.

Jesus lived, moved, spoke, from a life that was lived in the atmosphere of heaven, of the Kingdom. When He came to earth as a man, He left heaven in a sense, but heaven never left Him. Valleys, lowlands, they had no effect on Him. He was Christ the King everywhere. His perspective never changed. It was so throughout His ministry, in Gethsemane,  and upon the cross. He lived in, breathed in, the atmosphere of heaven. That which He inhaled, He exhaled upon a people trapped in the chains of death and darkness. Here's the clincher; this is exactly how we who call ourselves His are to live as well. Instead, we most often fall into the same traps the disciples did. Arguing among ourselves, overwhelmed by the needs and impossibilities before us, and so rendered powerless. To them Jesus spoke this rebuke in love, "You stubborn, faithless people. How long must I be with you until you believe? How long must I put up with you?" Where is He speaking the same to us today? How often must He speak it?

The disciples should have been able to minister His deliverance to that boy, but they couldn't. Who is it that we should be ministering His deliverance and life to as well, but can't? Have we lost our "mountain view?" Did we ever have one to begin with? Or, have we become so used to lowland sight that we have completely accepted lowland thinking? In the deep valley of life, do we see and think like everyone else there?

Samuel Rodriquez said, "Jesus is not coming back for defeated Church, but a glorious, rising one." Are we such? Can we, do we, minister life? Are we living and breathing in the atmosphere of heaven, seeing all with mountaintop sight? Or, is everything obscured by our breathing in the atmosphere of the valley, seeing all things from a valley perspective? Two atmospheres. Which is ours?

Blessings,
Pastor O

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