Climbing the mountains

Life is full of mountains. We don’t like to climb mountains unless we are mountain climbers. High school and college students are required to take classes in areas where they do not do well. Workers are often required to do jobs they don’t like. Physically we may get ill or injured. What about spiritually? In some of my ministry, I often meet people who think their mountain is too high. They may feel that they once walked close to the Lord. Then bad times came. It wasn’t their fault.

Any of us who have given our hearts and lives to the Lord know about spiritual ups and downs. One man once told me that his wife left him. She got the money and I got the bills. Some will tell you that they lost their job and couldn’t find another decent one. I just gave up because the bills kept piling up. I gave up and started to drink. I don’t go to church or read my Bible anymore.

The number and variety of sad stories that men have told me over the years is staggering. They usually get in trouble by feeling that their problems were too big. They just couldn’t deal with them anymore. Some have said that we took our children to church, read our Bibles and prayed. Then we started to have problems. Now we are apart. That’s when I gave up and started to drink and quit going to church. I swear instead of praying. I don’t want to be around the people that we hung out with before. I have just lost my faith.

God gave us a most amazing story of a man in His Word. This man was extremely wealthy and a good family and was blameless and upright before God. God allowed the devil to take his wealth, his family and his health. He was in severe physical pain and discomfort beyond description. His own dear wife told him to just curse God and die. Job told his wife that she had spoken foolishly.

Yes, we have or will have mountains to climb. Read the Book of Job in the Old Testament. None of us will ever have any mountains as high, as rough or as steep as Job did. He finally ended up having a wonderful life with more love, more family and more wealth than he had before. He did not give up. When the mountains get high and the going seems nearly impossible, God has the answer. That is the time to spend more time with God in prayer, Bible meditation and with God’s people. These are our Christian brothers and sisters who will love and support us. Don’t give up and quit.

For the 2013 Club, June 23 takes us to Esther 10 and Acts 6.

Keep going, you will make it.

Crist Langelett writes a twice-monthly column on faith. He is a chaplain for the North St. Paul city, police and fire departments, a chaplain at Washington County Jail, a past president of the North St. Paul Area Emergency Food Shelf and one of the founders of North St. Paul’s Polar Arena. He is active in civic groups and his local church.

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