DayBreaks for 09/24/12 – Getting Bigger
What is your Mt. Everest spiritually speaking? By asking that question, I’m really asking you what is your biggest challenge to reaching the pinnacle of God’s design and desire for you personally? Is it a hidden, secret sin that fills you with shame and guilt (or which you know should fill you with shame and guilt, but you’ve done it so long and so often that it no longer causes you to feel anything)? Is it pride? Is it a love of money or security? Is it a relationship that you know isn’t good or healthy, but you can’t bring yourself to leave that relationship behind?
After every failure (at least in the beginning) we beg God for forgiveness and pledge to Him that “I’ll never do that again!” (If I had a nickel for every time I’ve said that…!) And then we, by our own will-power, set out to not sin that way again…and it lasts for maybe a couple of days or a week or two at most. Then that temptation, that Mt. Everest, is right there outside the door again, knocking at our minds, prying at our hearts, tugging at our desires.
George Mallory was the famed mountain climber who may have been the first person ever to get to the top of Mount Everest. In the early 1920’s, he led a number of attempts to scale the mountain, eventually being killed in the 3rd attempt in 1924. Before that last and fatal attempt, Mallory said, “I can’t see myself coming down defeated.”
Mallory was an extraordinary climber, and nothing would force him to give up. His body was found in 1999, well preserved by the snow and ice, 27,000 feet up on the mountain, just 2000 feet from the peak. Give up he did not. His body was found face down on a rocky slope, head toward the summit. His arms were extended high over his head. His toes were pointed into the mountain; his fingers dug into the loose rock, refusing to let go even as he drew his last breath. A short length of cotton rope – broken – was looped around his waist.
When those who had set up camp for Mallory further down the mountain returned to England a banquet was held for them. A huge picture of Mt. Everest stood behind the banquet table, it is said that the leader of the group stood to be applauded, and with tears streaming down his face, turned and looked at the picture. “I speak to you, Mt. Everest, in the name of all brave men living and those yet unborn,” he said. “Mt. Everest, you defeated us once; you defeated us twice; you defeated us three times. But Mt. Everest we shall someday defeat you, because you can’t get any bigger but we can.”
Even the greatest struggles, the greatest obstacles to a life of faith, can be overcome through the Spirit’s power. The problem we have is that we give up too easily. We need to never give up – to keep digging our fingers into the rock, face upward, to never stop striving for the pinnacle.
In 1953 two climbers, Sir Edmund Hillary and Sherpa Tenzig Norgay, reached the top of Mt. Everest and their names are written in history. Someday, by the sheer grace of God, we shall reach the summit and our name will be found in the Book of Life.
I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. – Phil. 3:14
PRAYER: Lord, help me keep my face toward You as I look for that high calling and struggle to live up to it! Don’t let us give in to defeat and despair, for the victory is Yours and You have chosen to share it with us! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Copyright 2012 by Galen C. Dalrymple.
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