“It was a wonderful vacation and all I have are good memories.”
I was composing an email to our friends with whom we traveled to another country. It was an amazing journey but not without some drama. During the trip, the travel agency with whom we arranged many of the activities made several critical errors, resulting in missed restaurant reservations, insufficient numbers of tickets for various attractions, and less than accommodating hotel rooms in spite of the advertised promises. Our friend’s family was also dealing with health issues involving other members of their family and they needed to devote time on the phone to address these concerns. These issues led to several episodes of stress and conflict between our families, which could have marred an otherwise lovely vacation. Thankfully, by the end of the trip, we recognized these difficult periods were overshadowed by the magnificence and grandeur of the foreign land and the strength and tenderness of our friendship.
Anyone who has hiked a mountain range has experienced the views from the valley floor and the mountain peaks. While the peaks may be seen from the valley floors, at the top of the highest peaks, the valley floors are often obscured and one may only be able to see the other peaks. God continually reminds us that although we experience peaks and valleys through our journey through life, if we remain faithful to Him, He promises to see us through. At the end of the journey, He gives us the vantage point of viewing our past from only the mountain peaks, overlooking the valleys that were temporary obstacles and low points.
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.
Psalms 121:1-2 (ESV)
Is it any wonder that when God desires to uplift our spirits and encourage us, He uses the image of hills and mountains? As we lift our eyes upward, God allows us to only view the peaks to remember the times that He kept His promises to always help us. God, the Creator of heaven and earth, knows how to preserve the best memories of Himself to carry us through our most painful trials.
Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.