I love mountains! They are so majestic, so imposing! There’s something about mountains that causes me to praise God for His greatness. It’s not surprising that we often refer to the good times in our lives as “mountaintop experiences.” In fact, most of the significant encounters with God recorded in the Bible took place on a mountain:
* On Mt. Moriah God revealed himself to Abraham as the One who provides His own sacrifice (Genesis 22).
* On Mt. Horeb God revealed himself to Moses as “I Am” (Exodus 3).
* On Mt. Sinai God revealed himself to the people of Israel and gave the tablets of the Law (Exodus 31).
* From Mt. Abarim Moses saw the land that the Lord was giving to Israel (Numbers 27).
* On Mt. Carmel Elijah defeated the prophets of Baal (1 Kings 18).
* Peter, James and John witnessed Jesus’ transfiguration on a mountain (Matthew 17, Mark 9, Luke 9).
* Jesus taught His disciples on the Mount of Olives (Matthew 24, Mark 13).
* The disciples received the Great Commission on a mountain in Galilee (Matthew 28).
Oh, it is easy to praise God when we are on the mountain! It is easy to set our eyes and worship our creator when things are going well. It is easy to give thanks to God for His help when the world is “as it should be,” and when we have a clear perspective of His work in our lives.
But valleys are a different story… Valleys often speak of desolation, trouble, even death. The valleys in our lives are those times when we feel darkness all around; when the enemy seems to have the upper hand. Our valleys are those places of mystery where we have more questions than answers; where it seems that God is not hearing our prayers.
When we find ourselves in a valley, we may agree with the servants of the king of Syria (the enemy), who said of the God of Israel, “Their gods are gods of the hills, and so they were stronger than we. But let us fight against them in the plain, and surely we shall be stronger than they” (1 Kings 20:23). They had seen God grant the victory to Israel time and again, in the mountaintops, so they assumed God was a “god of the hills.”
Have you ever felt that way? Have you felt like God was with you when everything was going well, but in times of difficulty you felt alone?
But look at the rest of this story. The Lord said, “Because the Syrians have said, ‘The Lord is a god of the hills but he is not a god of the valleys,’ therefore I will give all this great multitude into your hand, and you shall know that I am the Lord” (1 Kings 20:28).
Even when you think He is not fighting for you, He is there. When you find yourself in a valley, stand still, and see the deliverance of your God. He is the God of the mountains and the valleys, and He won’t let you down. He is with you, and He is for you. He will never leave you nor forsake you. Draw near to Him and receive His grace. Praise God from the mountaintops! And praise Him in the valleys!
Dr. Chiqui Polo-Wood | All Rights Reserved 2015