Thursday, March 20, 2014

The Mountains we face...

Have you ever faced what appears to be an insurmountable mountain? Not necessarily a literal mountain, but one of those “mountains of life.” Does it terrify you?

I find myself in front of a pinnacle that looks, to me, like Mt. Everest.

You see, nearly 14 years ago my life was forever changed by the intrusion of this precious little man. I can hardly believe he is about to be 14 years old. The really scary part is that in a few months he will begin High School.

 How did this happen? How did the little guy in the swing get big enough for high school?

Homeschooling High School is my Mt. Everest.

The last few months I have been reading, researching, praying and planning for this next phase of our homeschool life. I have never been intimidated by homeschooling. I love the process of selecting materials, planning projects, and just learning in general. I love all of it. But high school scares me - it’s all part of the official record, it effects college, it effects the rest of his life, it’s a BIG deal. (A little melodramatic, I know!)

When looking at my Mt. Everest, I thought I knew which path I would take. I saw a path that would take us to higher ground with some assistance from some very capable, accredited sherpas. I mean, everyone needs help carrying the load, right? No one walks up the mountain alone, right?

Yet, I find that I don’t really like the sherpa. (FYI- my sherpa is a program not a person.) When I came to this realization, I freaked a little. How exactly do I get up this mountain without a sherpa? The unknown is always a bit terrifying, isn’t it? 

So I began to have a conversation with the Lord that sounded something like this - “I had a plan and a path, I don’t want to find a new path. I don’t like where the other paths lead. It might cost me more of myself than I really want to give. I might have to give up things that I am really committed to - ministry things, not just personal things Lord. Are you sure you know where we are going?”

The Lord in his great kindness has let me vent my fears, frustrations, anxieties and whininess. He has also reminded me that I am not alone on this journey. He is my "sherpa" (I mean shepherd)  - equipping me, leading me, growing me, carrying me and my baggage. 

It’s funny how He changes me. As I listen and seek his wisdom, I no longer want to take the original path. He’s shown me some alternate paths which lead to some really great experiences. He has taken what first terrified me and changed it to desire. I no longer want the old path, I actually want and prefer the new trail. Glory to God, he’s changed my mind and my heart.

Don’t get me wrong, I am still a little intimidated by the weight and responsibility of my Mt. Everest. I wish I had a community of fellow mountaineers that I could depend on when I feel lost or lonely. Yet, I know I am following where He leads me, so I press on to reach the summit.

A friend recently read this verse over me and I was encouraged by her and the Lord's kindness in giving it to her, especially for me, especially on that day.

"Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous hand." Isaiah 41:10

What’s your Mt. Everest? Does it terrify you? Is God speaking to you about it?

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