In my last blog post, I shared that thriving doesn’t differentiate the bottom of the mountain from the top. Truly, we can thrive no matter where we are on our mountain journey. That’s good news!
So how do we thrive, regardless of where we are on the journey?
Preparation is one of the most important parts of mountain climbing. It’s what makes us strong and gets us ready.
In order to endure the climb up Huayna Picchu Mountain in Peru, I enlisted a trainer who simulated mountain climbs during our workouts. She helped me build stamina. She motivated me to become stronger. She cheered me on so I could accomplish my goal.
Those pre-mountain workouts made me feel healthy, strong and confident. Even though preparing was difficult, it was well worth it—not only on mountain-climbing day—but long after the climb.
Just as I prepared physically for my big climb, I’ve learned spiritual training is just as vital for everyday climbing. Reading my Bible first thing in the morning gives me the juice I need for that particular day. The extended benefit is God’s words take root in my heart and thoughts and are useful for future journeys, as well.
Lately, I’ve been reading about the prophet Elijah in 1 Kings. For three and a half years Elijah waits through a drought for God to give him his assignment. These years proved to be a time of preparation for Elijah. During this quiet time of waiting, Elijah saw God’s provision every day through a widow who only had a tiny bit of oil and flour to spare. Yet the jar of flour and jug of oil was not used up until the Lord gave rain on the land (1 Kings 17:14).
What things did Elijah do during the drought? He waited and watched. Each day for three and and a half years, Elijah witnessed God’s faithfulness with food from a jar that never ran dry.
What a great lesson for me when I think preparation is always “doing something.” Sometimes preparation is waiting and watching. Waiting to see God’s faithfulness in action. And watching to see how that action proves God to be true and trustworthy. Almost always, it is through the little things God is faithful which is why we often miss it. That’s why droughts are necessary. They allow us the opportunity to wait and watch. In the end, this preparation allows us to see God’s power and provision when we might have otherwise missed it.
We all experience highs and lows that feel a lot like mountain journeys. Most likely yours looks different than mine. Your mountain may be easily defined with clear steps forward. Or it may look more like an obstacle course—not like a mountain at all.
Wherever you are on your journey, I want you to know I am cheering for you! I’m hoping you grasp the challenge to thrive so you can see how God, who loves you more than you can imagine, has prepared you for your particular mountain climb.
The Bible says this about God’s preparation for your big plans: “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him” (1 Corinthians 2:9).
His plans are bigger than you can even imagine!
Whether you are experiencing a season of drought, a tough climb, or challenging steps; I encourage you, dear reader, to embrace this time of preparation. You will soon embark on a mountain journey, even if you don’t see it now. Take it one step at a time. Begin today.
This is progress, and progress leads to thriving, no matter the size of step.