28
Nov
09

Peaks and Valleys

AGREE or DISAGREE:

 

Now behold, two of them were traveling that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was seven miles from Jerusalem. And they talked together of all these things which had happened. So it was, while they conversed and reasoned, that Jesus Himself drew near and went with them. But their eyes were restrained, so that they did not know Him…

Luke 24:13-16

Have you ever gathered with fellow believers for some intense fellowship around God’s Word? Perhaps it was while you were at a camp or on retreat or some such excursion. And as your time together draws to a close you leave with high hopes and a resolve to live life differently. However as time goes by, those extraordinary feelings and high hopes that an experience like that can produce often beginning to dim. You might even begin asking yourself if everything you thought you’d committed to do was in reality just a lie. DON’T DO THAT!

The afterglow we experience after a spiritual “peak” is an important part of our lives. However, when it starts to fade and we begin to recede into a spiritual “valley,” it doesn’t mean our past resolve, convictions or decisions become any less real. We all must come done the mountain top, and continue our lives in the valley. Once we return to real life, we’re right in the middle of Satan’s element, the world. In the valley, Satan has plans designed to destroy the work God has achieved in our hearts. Satan wants to challenge our dreams of walking closer to God right out of existence. And he will use whatever he can to do just that.

That’s exactly what faced the disciples on the road to Emmaus. Jesus had turned their world and lives upside down in a very short matter of time. Nothing would ever be the same again. He made them believe they were capable of doing much more than anyone had given them credit for in the past. But when the high priests and Romans had seemingly won the day, killing the very Son of God before their eyes, they were at a loss. They began to drift and doubt (John 20:24-25).

When we’re hit by a setback, we reel, we’re caught off-balance and we begin to doubt our stability. Often we long to go back to a time we could count on. As believers we need to be steadfast, constant and faithful to what Christ has done in our lives (1 Corinthians 16:13-14). We must keep our focus on Him, as the “author and finisher of our faith” (Hebrews 12:2). It is Christ alone Who can help us through the valleys we find our selves in so soon after the mountain top highs of the recent past.

Nevertheless I tell you the truth. It is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you. And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: of sin, because they do not believe in Me; of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more; of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged. “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you. All things that the Father has are Mine. Therefore I said that He will take of Mine and declare it to you.  

John 16:7-15

The lyrics of the song “Heart of Worship” by Matt Redman reminds us that Jesus is looking past the way things appear and in to our hearts. God’s will for our lives is to become more like Christ. As we make progress toward that goal, let God the Father, through His Holy Spirit, comfort you, guide you and strengthen you. He has an ultimate purpose even for the struggles you found as you returned home (Romans 8:28). He can take these challenges (here for a short season) and turn them into stunning victories for His glory.

GB&G2U

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