Near my house is a 1-mile track that runs the perimeter of a large church property. The scenery provides an incredible view of the mountains as well as quaint little houses tucked in the green pastures of a valley. Along one a part of the path there’s an edge of cedar trees that smell like Christmas. In the spring, little kids squeal and giggle from the playground. The path, filled with both hills and flat terrain, really challenges my run. Honestly though, I find myself planning a circuitous route to avoid the hills, especially towards the end of a run. It seems that every time I think I can’t take another step a hill sneaks up in front of me. I see the seemingly insurmountable incline and all I can think about is how I can’t breathe or how bad my legs hurt. My brain chants “You’ll never make it to the top.”
This situation is a lot like our spiritual walk. Life is cruising along pretty well; we are running at a steady pace, and suddenly a mountain shows up. It doesn’t take long for us to start planning an alternate route to make it easier – to simply avoid it.
Moses was running his race happily. And then God said, “Hey, why don’t you go get my people out of Egypt! Be a spokesperson for deliverance.” It didn’t take long for Moses to suggest another route: “Hey God this hill is too tough for me. Why don’t we make this a relay and add someone else to the team. He can do all the running . . . umm. . . I mean speaking” [rough translation of Exodus 4:13] Moses wanted to run the flat easy paths and let someone else run the hills.
Would things have been different if Moses faced the hill alone ? He never discovered if he had what it took to run that hill and be the sole deliverer of the Israelites. In that moment, Moses was depending on this own strength and focusing too hard on his weaknesses. What if he had simply agreed to the challenge and asked God for strength?
What hills loom in your life? Has your steady pace been interrupted with an incline you can’t quite get the courage to climb? You could plan an alternate route – or you could re-tie your shoes, pray for God’s strength, and put one foot in front of the other. You might fight for your breath or feel the strain in your muscles, but God will meet you at every step and put the wind at your back. Before you know it, you’ve reached the top, and God has done something in you that you never expected. Don’t be like Moses. Take the hill, you’ll be stronger for it.