Tag Archives: mountain top experience

Down On Your Luck

Have you ever said, “If it wasn’t for bad luck, I’d have no luck at all”? There are times in life when nothing seems to go your way. The odds are stacked against you. Your burdens seem heavier than you can bear. The thought of quitting or giving up can seem like the best option during those times. I understand what it’s like to wonder what did you ever do to make the world be against you. If you’re living in that moment right now, there is hope.

Psalm 145:14 says, “God gives a hand to those who are down on their luck, gives a fresh start to those ready to quit. (MSG)” Sometimes that fresh start is really what we need. God knows that. But a fresh start usually means an end to the last start. We want the fresh start, but we also don’t like to go through the closing of the previous one. It can often be painful. Walking through those difficult times is what helps create the new beginning though.

I like to tell people that the height of joy I know now is in direct proportion to the depths of sorrow I have faced. I can only experience as much joy that is equal to the suffering I’ve endured. It’s kind of like when jesus asked Peter which person loved Him more. Peter replied, “The one who has been forgiven most.” I believe the one who has experienced the most trouble can experience the greatest freedom. The one who has been forgiven the most is the most free. That person understands more than anyone where they were and what God has set them free of.

When we are under a heavy load or the world seems to be against us, we are in the prime spot to experience a greater depth of God’s grace. He does not want you to stay in the valley. He wants to help you up the mountain, but He understands that the valley is where we learn to appreciate the mountain top experiences. The valley is a dark place that blocks your view of the horizon. Without having been there, you cannot appreciate the light or view from the top of the mountain. There is purpose in the hard times. There are lessons to be learned when we are down on our luck.

God is not content to leave you down on your luck or without hope. His desire is to give you a hand, a nudge or push to get you where He wants you. He needs to close the last chapter before He opens the next. A fresh start is what God offers. Giving us a clean slate from our past is His specialty. He is there for you to help pull you out from under the load that weighs you down so you can experience freedom like never before. He wants you to experience joy like you’ve never known. He wants to take you from the place where you can’t see tomorrow to the mountain top where you have 360 degree views of the horizon. Trust Him to be faithful to His promise in Psalm 145.

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Changed Through Serving

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It’s Free Friday! Today is the day you let go of the things in your life that keep you down or hold you back from all God has for you. To celebrate, I’m giving away a copy of “No Longer A Slumdog: Bringing Hope To Children In Crisis” by K. P. Yohannan. Keep reading to find out how to enter.

On our last full day in Haiti, we started off by climbing the mountain in front of the guest house. It was as much a spiritual journey as it was physical. We walked through a poor neighborhood on the side of the mountain and then followed the rocky path up. We had to stop several times to catch our breath. It was good to see how far we had gone and then be able to look at the top to know where we were going. It reminded me how we often grow weary doing good. We get tired in our walk with Christ. We hit plateaus at times, and at others, we have steep climbs to make in a short amount of time.

When we got to the top, there was a spot where a church was being built. There were two ladies and a man who were up there singing and praying over the community below. When we walked back down the mountain, there were more people along the path who were also singing and praying. It challenged me to pray for my community, city, work place and wherever else God has me. The sound of prayer was inspiration on such a tough journey. It reminded me that prayer gives us strength where ours runs out.

After we arrived back at the guest house, we loaded up the team and headed for Roboto. It’s the poorest part of Gonaives. The students got out of the truck and immediately started filling plates with the rice we brought. We then went class to class giving these students the only meal they will receive for the day. It was incredible to watch these students serve the poorest of the poor in the Western Hemisphere. They truly were the hands and feet of Jesus and brought light into such a dark place.

After we finished feeding and playing with the children, we went to the Gonaives orphanage to pick up the children there. For the first time the children were going to visit the Myan orphanage. They climbed the trucks like they were jungle gyms. As we drove over the mountain to Myan, the kids were smiling ear to ear. There was laughter and excitement. When we pulled into the gates, they jumped out and immediately began playing with each other. It was beautiful to watch orphans from both our orphanages playing together for the first time.

Before we left, we went out of the gates to where we were breaking ground for a school building. While the construction team was digging up the ground for the foundation, they came across another foundation that was a part of a nearby wall. The contractor researched the history and found that there was a French fortress that had been built on that spot in 1802 that enslaved Haitians. Over 200 years later, an orphanage and school are being built on that very spot and is setting Haitians free! Our God new 200 years ago that we would hear the call to defend the orphan and would build in that spot.

God moved in our hearts on this trip. He called several to be missionaries and others into ministry. I watched as God took kids who were timid and opened them up to share what He has done in their lives. This experience has wrecked their lives because they’ve done what James 1:27 calls true and undefiled religion. They have cared for orphans and widows. They have helped push back the darkness in Haiti with the light of Jesus. Not only have we been changed because we were here, Haiti is different too. We now have a 14 hour journey home where each one will tell their story and others will catch the vision.

If you would like to win “No Longer A Slumdog” by K. P. Yohannon, all you have to do is go to my Facebook page here and “like” it. I will randomly pick one person tomorrow (March 29, 2014) who has liked my page. If you have already liked my page and enjoy reading these daily devotionals, you are already entered. Please invite your friends to like my page so they can receive encouragement from God’s Word too.

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