It has been a whirlwind year since the last time I darkened the "New Post" screen for this blog. I've grown, traveled abroad, conquered huge milestones, and seen God work in so many ways. But just like every mountain is exhilarating at the top as you gaze at the view, you always have to head back down at some point and then the valleys reach deeper than you feel is fair.
My mountain top was amazing. I was on a spiritual high coming into my Junior year and I felt like nothing, not even 13 hour jet-lag, could pull me down. But then I heard the news of my mom -- possible breast cancer. You never, ever really know what it's like in that situation until it happens and then everything you've been telling yourself about how "easy it would be because of what I know to be true of God" is forgotten as you stare in shock at your desk. Yes, I've watched others go through this, but I never realized just how scary, dark, and hard that road was until I stood at the beginning of it. I struggled to work a night job, have a full day of school, get all my requirements for school done, and keep my head in the books while my mind constantly raced back home to my family.
After a couple visits to the doctor, my mom was finally scheduled for surgery and it looked like there was finally a light at the end of the tunnel. But no sooner had that light begun to appear, when another bomb fell, knocking me to my knees again. News I had never dreamed of hearing popped up on my phone screen right as I was leaving for work. I can't remember anything that night, I was so shocked. I fought tears as I held it together with a fake smile for days, but I couldn't escape it. Every time I sat still, my mind constantly played back that news. It felt like every time I would straighten back up and thought I had a handle on it, I was buckling again. I've felt drowning before in situations, but this felt like I was literally drowning.
I'm sure we've all, at some point or another, reached rock bottom like that. You don't know where to turn or what to think. You just fight to keep yourself strong in front of other people and look like you have the best life, but on the inside you're screaming. However, we have the ability to flip the switch in our brains, but we focus on the wrong things.
We're not remembering the view from the top in the right way.
We feel entitled because of where we just were, but now God is bringing us low to remind us of one important detail. We were standing at the top of the mountain, but were standing on Christ; the true Rock. Each trial or hurtle was placed before us to force us to not just look to the top, but keep our eyes focused upward as we pulled ourselves up onto the Rock.
Christ is mentioned in scripture as the Rock 59 times! And every time, he is mentioned as being the constant steady, higher place when turmoil surrounds us.
In You, O Lord, I have taken refuge; Let me never be ashamed; In Your righteousness deliver me. Incline Your ear to me, rescue me quickly; Be to me a rock of strength, A stronghold to save me. For You are my rock and my fortress; For Your name's sake You will lead me and guide me.
From the end of the earth I call to You when my heart is faint; Lead me to the rock that is higher than I.