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Sunday, September 19, 2010

On the Mount

Ten thousand feet high, the Colorado Rockies, a 500-acre working ranch where friends who are generous-beyond-anything-we-deserve invited us to spend a weekend of contemplation and fellowship. An old log homestead, long hikes up sage-covered hills and along fencerows, six cows in our back yard, candlelight meals, hours to read and pray, unfiltered powerful sunlight, space and quiet. The blessing of being drawn into a holy family's God-seeking life, and gifted with their friendship. The renewal of pure beauty. Here is what Julia jotted down today: A forest of ever-green pines dotted with clumps of brilliantly golden aspen. A clear mountain stream gurgles by. Here and there huge stands of aspen turn a hillside into solid gold. Tall bare peaks above the tree line are capped with snow during winter. To top it all a cloudless blue sky stretches above.
Even Jesus called a few of his disciples away from the crowd to the high mountains. There is something about the inaccessibility, the strain of the climb, the removal from pressing demands, that we need in order to have the veil of the ordinary peeled back, for a moment, and to glimpse glory. In Matthew 17 this interlude comes just after Jesus' predictions of his death, and just before the real cross-bearing begins. He knows that his friends need to be overwhelmed by the bright cloud of an approving God, need to fall on their faces, feel his touch, and hear his reassuring words, do not be afraid.
So here we are on the mount. We've moved from the ranch to a MTI missionary conference at the Hideaway, five days specifically designed for people in transition like us. Called away from Africa for this climb, and waiting for God to reveal and speak in ways that will empower us to walk back down in the new year.


Dan said...

Your description leaves my heart hanging out wanting to go there! Dan

Anonymous said...

WOW. tastes of heaven... wish i was with you guys