Cost:  Sometimes expensive; sometimes free.

Time Spent Planning:  Sometimes much; sometimes little.

Having a Mountaintop Experience:  Priceless.

In the world of running, a race that creates joyful anticipation and inspires months of training, mental preparation, and carbo-loading can provide a mountaintop experience … a moment when everything comes together.  And, there’s always a finish line, halleluiah.  While we don’t desire the end of most mountaintop experiences, the end of a race is a blessing we celebrate.  After the celebration, however, the path eventually descends back to routine-ville.  “Routine” sounds painfully boring, but if we infuse our daily life with the sights and experiences from the mountaintop, it can be magnificent.

They that hope in the Lord will renew their strength, they will soar as with eagles’ wings; they will run and not grow weary, walk and not grow faint.  Isaiah 40:31

We just returned from a family vacation, and I didn’t want to come home.  It was magical and happy there.  A clean room greeted us each evening, and we ate every meal – prepared by someone else – together.  While it wasn’t cupcakes and enchantment every minute, what I’ll remember are the joyful moments when our spirits soared.  Whether it be a celebration that unites a community, a wedding that bonds family members near and far, a week at church camp that unites us with God and new friends, or a vacation that reconnects us, each mountaintop experience is magnificent and important.  The view is better at the summit.  Clouds of daily distraction float away, and we live fully in the moment.  As our spirits soar, our many blessings are evident and we’re renewed with a clear vision of what we should be valuing, hoping for, and seeking in our daily lives.  Yet, the finish line will appear, the vacation road will lead home, and the last camp s’more will be consumed.  The time will come to descend and re-enter daily life.  We could set up camp at the peak, but for most of us, that’s not practical or what God’s calling us to do.  We’re meant to return home changed – strengthened by His blessings, with renewed hope and trust in Him.  We spend much of our time in a routine, but it should be everything but boring.  As our hope in Him elevates us to glorious heights, so it can  bring renewed joy, peace, and gratitude to our daily life.

Dear God, please help us embrace the mountaintop experiences You give us and help us turn every day into one of gratitude and hope in You.