Scripture is filled with glorious descriptions of majestic mountains as a metaphor for life. “How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of Him who brings good news, who publishes peace, who brings good news of happiness, who publishes salvation, who says to Zion, “Your God reigns” (Isaiah 52:7). Your righteousness is like the mountains of God; your judgements are like the great deep; man and beast You save, O Lord” (Psalm 36:6).
On top the mountain great things were done because it was there that God dwelled. Upon the mountains God gave His law to Moses. Upon the mountain Ezekiel heard God in the whisper. Upon the mountain Christ was transfigured and the mountain is where Christ chose to be alone with His Father.
Mountains are majestic and it makes sense that we would equate their glory with the glory of our Creator. Mountains stand for strength and stamina. They tower proudly and boldly against the sky.
But life is not always about our mountain moments. Sometimes it’s the valleys we must wade through because life doesn’t feel as bold and grand as we would like. Though we are blessed at times to feel were on top of the world, there are times in every life that it seems we couldn’t get any lower.
It’s in these times that we reach out for whatever we can to help us to climb out of the pit we’re in. Sometimes we grab on to things of the world, but they can only last so long and too often they only help us to dig ourselves in deeper.
But other times, we listen to God’s advice, and we trust in Him to help us ascend out of the valleys we have in life. From the valley we cry, “I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth” (Psalm 121:1-2). The Psalmist knew that, when we are deep in the valleys of life, only God can help us to find the mountains.
Psalm 23:4 says it best, “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.” Even when we are in the throws of our valleys in life, God remains at our side to guide us from the depths of despair to the mountaintops. Even when it seems we couldn’t dig ourselves in any deeper, God hears our prayers and gives us strength to climb.
“Comfort, comfort my people, says your God. Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and cry to her that her warfare is ended, that her iniquity is pardoned, that she has received from the LORD’S hand double for all her sins.
A voice cries: “In the wilderness prepare the way of the LORD; make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain. And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together, for the mouth of the LORD has spoken” (Isaiah 40:1-5).
In every life there will be valleys, times when heartache is real, times when sorrow, sickness, strife and loneliness make themselves known. There will be times, also, when it feels that God is a million miles away. In these valleys in life, it can be hard to trust in anything.
But don’t give up. God has not left you. He continues to comfort and guide you, even if it seems He is away. It might be that He is asking you to endure something for a greater good, but He hasn’t forgotten you. Trust in Him to uphold you and dive into His Word so that He may speak to you. He will make His presence known to you if you are ready and willing to find Him. “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of (your trials), for the Lord your God goes with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you” (Deuteronomy 31:6).
If you find yourself in a valley today or any day, take time to pray. Let’s do that now together:
Heavenly Father, thank you for helping us when we find ourselves in the valleys of life. Help us to trust in You to build us up and dig us out of the trials we face. Lead us to the mountain top. Amen.