I’m a girl from the mountains.
Did you know that about me? I grew up in the Appalachian Mountains of Southwest Virginia. My hometown sits in a valley and borders several nearby states. So, it’s just a hop and a skip away from my current home in Tennessee.
In 2015, I shared a post about lessons learned—from God himself—in the Great Smoky Mountains of Tennessee.
But this week I mastered fresh lessons. I attended a writers conference in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. I reconnected with writers, formed new friendships, and networked with industry professionals.
Although this made my third trip to the event, the Lord spoke to my heart. God’s Word, worship songs, knowledge gleaned from others, and the Lord’s beautiful creation reached the depths of my soul.
I often sit in life’s classroom. I won’t say there’s passing and failing grades. And the Lord never grades on the curve. But I know the good Lord speaks in mighty ways to those willing to attend class.
Even if we didn’t enroll and a pop quiz catches us by surprise.
3 Lessons in the Mountains
- Uphill climbs. I walked countless uphill steps on a campus built on hills and inclines—no flat land. A landscape designed to take me to my intended destinations. And life’s filled with these same movements. We strive toward goals and aspirations, laboring to reach the pinnacle of our efforts. One of the event speakers, Davis Bunn, challenged the attendees with a four word sentence from Matthew 11:30. My yoke is easy. Lesson: God’s callings and goals for us lead to His intended destinations. He walks with us and directs our steps. The Lord not only provides rest when we arrive at the summit, but also along the way (Matthew 11:28-29).
- Lost paths. Which way do I go? A campus map helped me find workshop buildings and I asked for directions from staff. Speaker, Steve Laube, gave guidance in how to know God’s will, His direction and path, from Romans 12:1-2. God’s map and clarity for life comes through a transformed and renewed mind, and by not conforming to this world. Steve noted, “God’s perfect will won’t come from the world or Netflix or within us.” But it’s contained in Scripture. “The living God chose to reveal himself in a book.” Lesson: To find the Lord’s path, use this equation. Transform your mind in God’s Word + Don’t conform to the world’s ideas = Discern God’s will.
- Heading down the mountain. Life’s journey and the Christian walk include climbing up mountains and looking for the right path. Yet, there always comes a time when we descend the mountain. The experience culminates at higher altitudes, then we make our way to lower ground. Lesson: A spiritual perspective for every-day-living in the valley forms on the mountain top. But it’s useless until we leave and head back down the mountain.
Prayer: Lord, thank You for creating the mountains and for mountain-top experiences. Remind my heart that You meet with me at the pinnacle and in the valley. I’m grateful You walk with me on the journey and when I head down the mountain. Your yoke is easy and Your burden is light. Guide me in Your will as I renew my mind in Your Holy Word. Amen.
Images from the conference with friends, Tammy and Leigh Ann, and the Blue Ridge Mountains. Design by Adobe Spark.
© 2017 by Karen Friday, All Rights Reserved
May 25, 2017 at 8:50 pm | Uncategorized