PLANNING THE CLIMB
Rising dark and forbidding in the early morning, its head swathed in a scarf of mist, Mount Toolybrunup is the second highest peak in the Stirling Ranges of Western Australia.
Over breakfast, around the campfire, my family and I planned the climb the mountain. It was 3,000 feet the highest we had ever climbed – the prospect was daunting yet exciting.
We set a goal – to have lunch at the top of the mountain. It should have been easy. We were not far up the mountain when our lungs began to pump like a blacksmith’s bellows. Our hearts pounded against rib cages like birds trying to escape. Our resolve was starting to weaken. The higher we went, the harder it became.
Vanessa, now my son’s wife, slapped her aching legs, ‘Legs, do as I say.’ She was trying to summon up energy, willing her legs to take yet another step and another. We were suffering from jelly-legs.
ON THE TOP
We sat on a rock, taking a rest in readiness for a final onslaught to the summit.
A wide semi-circle of mountains surrounded us, beyond, rows of mountain ranges marched northward. Beautiful in their varying shades of blue. Vanessa smacked her legs again saying, ‘I feel angry with my legs.
‘Don’t waste energy on anger,’ I replied. Getting frustrated was the last thing we should do if we wanted to reach the top. Eventually, we clambered over the last boulder and were on the summit of the world. What a vision!
There is another lofty vista, a different one, one that is vital to our well-being here and now and in the future.
Christ lifted us from the valley of death to the heavenly heights to sit with him in the heavenly realms. What a vision but it is more than a vision, it is a reality bought by Christ. We do sit with him in the celestial altitudes, we have entered the throne room of God with him because he made us as righteous as he is. What a remarkable fact.
We eventually had to clamber back down from the giddy tops, but as the children of God, we never have to leave the giddy peak of God’s throne room.
The fact of living in the throne room of God means that we are above the fog of living bound by our circumstances. Our vision is clear, we live in the sunshine of God’s acceptance of us.
MUCH GREATER THINGS
‘We can do all things through Christ who strengthens us, ’needs to be our motto. Added to this thought, Jesus spoke of us doing all that he did and even greater things. Have you ever thought about praying for the dead to rise? For a miracle to take place when you’ve prayed? No, the thought pops up, ‘It might not be God’s will.’ It is God’s will for us to be in health and prosper. It is God’s will that our prayers are answered, ‘Ask what you will, and it will be.’ Another quote, ‘speak to the mountain and by faith, it will move the sea,
I climbed Mount Toolybrunup and sat on the tallest crag and drank in the glory, another tick on my bucket list.
My biggest challenge as a Christian is to acknowledge that I am just as Jesus is right now in Heaven – recognizing that all of his glory, power, and perfection is in me and I can climb mountains of faith, even cast them, if need be, into the sea. I see the vision splendid, and I press on claiming as mine, the reality of Christ in me.