If I'm honest, I've had a difficult couple of weeks. Don't get me wrong, there were wonderful experiences, but internally, I've battled significantly with things like my calling, next steps, plans, my purpose, and other things like that.
I’m uncertain what brought this on. Maybe it was going back to New York with Rain. The last time we were in New York together, we had high hopes that it would be a dream come true. It turned out to be the opposite.
Going back is tough. No one likes being reminded of dreams lost.
We spent most of our time in upstate New York for the wedding of some old friends. The resort was beautiful, surrounded by mountains and trees. You’d never guess you were in New York.
Purposelessness has a way of beating you down and spiraling. If you just sit there in it for a while, one thing that doesn't make sense suddenly becomes five things, then everything.
So in an effort to gain some purpose, I decided I’d hike into the mountains and ask the Lord for a word, a vision, anything, any kind of direction that would help me move forward from where I was. James says that if we ask for wisdom, God doesn’t think we're weak for not being able to do it on our own. That’s so different than me. People frustrate me when they can’t grasp how to do things. Like someone at the self-checkout trying to figure out whether they should swipe or insert their card. They just stand there looking confused. Drives me crazy. But God’s not like me. He knows we need help and doesn’t mind giving it.
So I hiked up the path and found a place to sit and began asking for wisdom. I was sitting on a natural bench forged by huge mountain boulders that had been there for centuries. And if I’m honest, not a lot happened.
I spent most of my time looking at the hiking path. It was strange and inefficient. It wound at odd places, and there were times where the path almost U-turned. It was confusing. Why build a path like this? As I studied it, I realized the path was built around the rocks. It had to be, because those things aren’t moving. They’re massive and beautiful but so big they blocked the view of the lake. I tried to find a better place to sit, but it was pointless. Just when I'd get beyond one rock there was another one surpassing its size.
This whole thing was pointless. I’d been out there for a few hours and all I had to show for my time was a good Instagram photo.
I gave up and decided to head back. I’d given God plenty of time to speak. If he wasn’t going to, I was going back to bed.
As I made my way back down the path, around the rocks, I came across something I had missed on the way up. The path normally went around the rocks, but in this case the path went under three gigantic boulders that had all fallen on one another and made a wall on my left and right, thirty feet high, with another boulder resting on the very top forming a canopy over the path. It was amazing. You came face to face with this gigantic sculpture of rocks leaning against one another, perfectly at rest. Thousands of pounds resting in perfect balance.
There I heard the Lord speak. He said, “This is what I can do. People can make ornate things, carve paths, and build resorts, but I sculpt the mountains. This is what I do. Man could not recreate this monument. I build things that are so majestic, so incredible, so immovable that other things have to be built around my creation. This path HAD to go around these rocks. Nothing comes close to what I do. Nothing can compare to what I create. Stop trying to create your future and trust that I can do that for you. Just trust me.”
I sat at that spot on the path for maybe an hour thinking through what I heard. This was my life. I had been trying to build something great for myself. I had been fighting for myself, striving for myself, trying to create something great for myself and by myself. I had been settling for a man-made path when the Lord wanted to sculpt the mountains.
If I’m honest, this is what I’ve been reminding myself of these past few days. I really want the mountains, but I struggle to trust. I believe Jesus has something better in store for us, better than what we can do for ourselves. As difficult as it is, let’s commit, and recommit when we forget, to trust and wait. Let’s resolve in our hearts not to settle for man made, when the mountains are available.