The Way Down the Mountain


A Pastoral Prayer.

Heavenly father,   There is a memory I have of climbing to the top of Mt. Monadnock with my daughter.  On the way up to the summit, I didn’t take my eyes off the rocks and path in front of me.   Each step was deliberate, and I was sidestepping twisted roots and wet leaves. It was a struggle and I was continually afraid of falling.

When we finally reached the top, we were tired, but we celebrated together.   From the place we stood we could see for miles. The landscape seemed like something out of this world.  On the top of that mountain, it was as we were standing in the clouds already.

Yet the true beauty of that day and that mountain wasn’t experienced until we started back down.  It was then that the vista which was behind us on the way up now spread itself out before us.  The view was breathtaking.  It was as if a artist had created masterpiece fresh with each step.   Although the journey down the mountain was at times even tougher physically than the way up, it didn’t matter.  It didn’t matter because we were lost in the wonderful canvas painted for us.

Heavenly father, help us to learn from that moment on the mountain.   Help us to learn from the way up, and the way down.

When our attention is on the rocks and the hazards right in front of us, keep our eyes open to your presence. It’s in those moments that we want our steps to be deliberate and steady, but we ask that you remind each of us that by putting our trust in you, we can rest assured that everything will be all right.

Let us find your hope, your promise, and your peace in all those moments where we can’t seem to see beyond a few feet before us.    Let us find these things in you, and hold on tight.

When we overcome and move beyond the struggles of right now, and when we reach our mountaintops, remind us that we can celebrate together.   Let us find strength as a community in the celebrations of our neighbors.    Let us enjoy each other’s blessings as our own.  Let us jump in joy when any scale the mountain.

Lastly, as we move down from the summit, and we move beyond the struggles of this moment to those of the next, let us not lose sight of the beauty that is all around us, all the time.   Help us to find your grace and your love in all these moments.  Keep us from thinking that your blessings are fleeting.

In the day to day of my life, please God, remind me of the trip down the mountain.   In your name and promise I pray, Amen.

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