Coming Down from the Mountain

Moses turned and went down the mountain with the two tablets of the Testimony in his hands. They were inscribed on both sides, front and back. The tablets were the work of God; the writing was the writing of God, engraved on the tablets. (Exodus 32:15-16)

I've just come down the mountain....literally. I spent two short days around Rocky Mountain National Park with my parents, my husband and my children. On our hikes, I felt bathed in God's creative, abundant love. When I go into the mountains, I sense God's presence in a deeper way than I do anywhere else.

But I always have to come back down.

Moses met God on the mountain.....in a way you and I can perhaps only wish for. He came down with the work of God, God's writing on a tablet (on both sides, no less).  He came back with a clear vision for the people, directly from the hand of God and a clear sense of how he was to lead them.

 And when he came back down, he found himself right back in the same situation he had left .... only a little worse since the grumbling complainers he had been leading through the wilderness had, in his absence, gone and built themselves a golden calf, violating the first and most important instruction God gave Moses for those people during his time on the mountain.

Can you imagine how you would feel if you were Moses?  Angry?  Discouraged?  Defeated?  Hopeless?

While Moses was on the mountaintop with God, the people lost their way. Their vision faltered. Their faith in their leader waned, and with it went their faith in God.

But the mountaintop experience changed Moses, solidifying his vision, strengthening his faith in God. His job as the leader of the people of Israel was to keep the vision in front of the people, to renew and refine and re-energize the vision.....and his time on the mountaintop made him a stronger leader.

  • Who are you leading today? Yourself? Your family? People at work? A ministry at church?
  • Where do you meet God on the mountaintop? When did you last go up? How soon do you need to go again to clarify your vision and tap into the power that compels your leadership?
  • How might going to the mountaintop impact your energy and passion and vision for leading what God has given you to lead? For dealing with the fog that clouds the vision of the people God has given you to leave?
  • When will you do whatever it takes to get to the mountaintop? (Seriously....look at your calendar....WHEN?)

God, when my soul feels dry....when my vision gets blurry....help me hear your call to go up the mountain. Give me the strength to set aside what needs to be set aside so that I can heed the call. And when I am with you on the mountaintop, refresh my spirit, reignite my passion, and renew my vision so that I may be the kind of leader you call me to be when I come back down. Amen.

Kim Turnage

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