When my kids were young I would hold their hands as we crossed the street or in large crowds or anytime they felt afraid or unsure or uncomfortable. I would even carry them on my shoulders so they could get a better picture of what was around them. Then, when we would get to a playground or home or someplace I knew was safe I would loosen my grip and let them run and play and explore. I’ve come to think of the Lord in much the same way. When hard times come, we slip our hand in His and he holds it tight. Sometimes He carries us on His shoulders so that we can see better what is around us and then at other times He wraps us in his arms because we are sad or frightened. Then, when all about is safe and secure, he releases His grip and lets us run and explore, always with a watchful eye.
I have heard over the years that we should “dream big dreams” and “believe for great things”. I agree we need to have hope for our future and press on toward the goal, but we also need to find peace in the present and release from the past. Carrying age-old hurts and battles around weighs us down and they are a constant distraction from the big dreams and great things that we are called to. Letting go, however, is often much more difficult than we think and moving on means leaving some things behind – you can never take it all with you. Carrying all that weight can make any road difficult and even a slight incline can stop us in our tracks. Often what we call mountains in our way are only towers of the past that we have been either unwilling to conquer or unable to overcome. Some say that we ought to claim things that are not as though they are and in doing so give God the opportunity to perform miracles. In essence, if we set a huge goal that we could never possibly attain on our own, then it obligates God to act on our behalf. I don’t think this is what the Bible is talking about. God is far from obligated to do anything more than He already has on our behalf…He has already done, provided, given, and sacrificed everything for us. I don’t believe that the Good Lord would have us sit back and shout out wants, desires, and demands while He does the heavy lifting…that cross He bore was heavy enough.
I believe that God wants us to consider the cost, make a plan, and figure out how to accomplish something – then go out and pursue it. And in those times when we find ourselves overwhelmed or struggling or falling and in need, He will move those mountains and give us sure footing again. We are to be active participants in the plan, not watchers in the wings waiting for our curtain call. Moving mountains doesn’t always mean the mountain moves. Sometimes the Good Lord can work such a change in us that what we once believed was a mountain becomes nothing more than a pebble on the path that we pick up and cast into the puddle in the ditch. He does not always change the mountain – He more often changes us.