I once heard a speaker talk about faith as not winning the lottery but climbing a mountain. For those of you who know me you know my affinity for the outdoors: camping, climbing, and hiking. The thing about all of these is that you only see pictures of the summit, the overlook, or the beautiful parts of the hike and the day. No one is ever posting pictures of the thick brush you have to walk through, the hot sun you’re hiking under, or the incredibly boring and strenuous stretches of trail you have to hike to get to somewhere that’s worth a picture.
The same can be said of our faith, can it not? Our youth just finished up a Revolution Weekend just shy of two weeks ago. It truly is a high point of our year. However, we are now entering spring, which is typically a slower time of year. We’re all antsy for summer to be here, for mission trips, vacations, VBS, and camps. Yet we have to go through these slower times, day in and day out, one foot after the other, to get to those high points. God was present with us during Advent and Revolution Weekend, and God is still present in the week in and week out worship, Sunday School, and Refuge.
I would argue that these times are more important than the summit bids, the Revolution Weekends. During these times you build your endurance, you build relationships. These times form us and allow us to reflect on where we have been, where we are going, and give us respite to stop, slow down, and take in the beauty of the everyday. These are times that God uses to help us become more of who God designed us to be as God’s people. Yes, the high points help with that, but fruit doesn’t grow and blossom on the mountaintop. No, fruit grows and blossoms in the valley, where we spend most of our time.
As we make our way through spring, in the valley, anxiously waiting for that next summit bid, I pray that our youth will be formed here, that they will find rest and opportunities to grow in their faith, building endurance and creating relationships that God will use to shape them into the masterful creation that they truly are. I hope you will join me in that prayer.
Grace and Peace,