To the Top

Steven Valadez

A couple of summers ago, a friend and I decided to climb the highest peak in Southern California, Mount San Gorgonio.  We wanted to take the “tough” trail.  It ran about 14 miles and gained an elevation of about 6,000 feet.  We were prepared to make it a two-day trip.  We had tents, sleeping bags, food, and water.  Our packs weighed about 45lbs each.  On day one, we made it to the camp site, about 3 miles from the peak.  Day two we hit the peak, then came back down (down is easier and faster than going up).  It was a long and difficult ordeal, but we made it.  We ran out of water and food, but had made it to the top, saw the great view, and got down in one piece.

Back at the trailhead, we ran into a group of seven hikers on their way up.  It was about 2:30 in the afternoon.  We asked them where they were headed.  “To the top!” was the enthusiastic reply.  My friend and I quickly analyzed the group, no jackets, no hats, no packs, or tents, or sleeping bags.  Each person carried one bottle of water and a tiny little waistpack.  There was no way these people were going to make it “to the top.”  They would run out of water before they made it a quarter of the way there.  Even worse, they were getting a late start.  It would be dark before they reached the halfway point.  Larger groups travel slowly.  They were totally unprepared.

Sometimes, in our Christian life, we are unprepared.  We try to take on challenges or make commitments that we don’t properly prepare for.  Have you ever found yourself tired, frustrated, or stagnant in your Christian walk?  Sometimes, we don’t see the progress we want, or can’t seem to break out of the rut of bad habits we are in.  Sometimes, it’s because we’re not fully prepared.  How do we become prepared?

2 Timothy 3:16-17 tells us that “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

When we spend time in God’s Word, we will be better prepared to handle the challenges and growth God wants us to experience.  When we understand who God is and what His promises are, we are able to make it “to the top” and experience the benefits of our relationship with Him.  God’s Word is the single best tool to help us develop godly habits and the strength to make through the rough parts of life so we can see the good things He has in store for us. God’s Word is what we need to be “thoroughly equipped” to do the good things He has planned for us.

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