Following our recent trip to the Holy Land, Kathy and I took a few days to come back home through Switzerland and surrounding Alps countries. We both see that area as the “garden spot of the world”—so rugged and beautiful are its mountains, glaciers and green valleys. Late in the afternoon we pulled into Chamonix, in Eastern France. Our hope was to see Mount Blanc, the highest peak in Western Europe. The only problem was that it had been raining all day (as it regularly does in this part of the world) and the clouds hung very low over the valley at nearly tree top level. In spite of all we had anticipated the view was non-existent. There was nothing there to substantiate any of the stories we had heard or the pictures we had seen. So we went to bed disappointed. But the next morning we awoke to brilliant sunshine streaming into our room. Instinctively we peered out the window. It took a moment for our minds to cancel out last night’s memories of the place and adjust to the morning’s staggering vista. There in all its glory was the beautiful rounded peak of Mt. Blanc. It had also been there the night before, but only now could it be experienced.
I have often pondered that experience because it seems to provide an important metaphor for life. A casual traveler through that country who knew nothing of its world-renowned scenery would not have hesitated to keep moving had he encountered the heavy clouds. His goal would have been to find a dry and inviting spot to stay for the night. What brought us to that very spot was our belief that, despite the present situation, the glorious scenery we sought would eventually show itself to us.
Even so, our faith in Christ often leads us into dark valleys and dismal circumstances. Church work and Christian ministry can often appear dark and unrewarding and we are tempted to quickly move to brighter camping spots. Only our trust that we have not been misled and that we are indeed in the right location at the right time keeps us in place. We know that, when the unwelcome mists eventually lift, we will be rewarded with what we came for—a glorious revelation of God Himself. Hang in there with us, friends, as we move through another year of service. He who has called us will not send us away empty.
Senior Pastor of Cactus Christian Fellowship