I often hike in the mountains that I wake up to every morning. They're just a few miles from my house and I have a perfect view of the Huachucas from most of the windows in my house and my back porch.
They're beautiful mountains, turning different colors throughout the day and even seemingly growing larger when surrounded by a blanket of clouds. If you're just into looking at the mountains, the Huachucas are about as pretty as they get. They bring to mind God's majesty, His power, His steadfastness and His sovereignty. They make me feel small, but very protected and secure.
But if you're into hiking, the Huachucas do more than just please the eye. They present a challenge.
Some days I'm really up for a challenge. Others, not so much. Even though I love to hike and explore nature, I must admit, I'm still a bit of a sissy in some respects. I like to smell nice, have good looking hair, and eat off a plate. I'm also quite afraid of snakes, javelinas (wild hogs we have in our mountains - I know, yuck!), bears (yes, we have those too), and lizards (LOTS of those!).
So what's a sissy hiker to do? Well, I could just look at those mountains from the comfort of my back porch. Or I could let go of my fears and my disdain for wild, creepy things, and hit the trail. I'm not going to pretend otherwise; I have to give myself a good talking to every time I get out there, but I do manage somehow to get my hiking clothes on ('cause this sissy is at least going to look snazzy even if I do stink!), lace up my boots, fasten on my pack and hit the trail.
I LOVE hiking, mind you, but I have to overcome a dozen fears and hangups every time I head into those beautiful mountains. Why do I do it? Because it's so worth it! The view of the mountains from my backyard pales in comparison to what you get to see and experience from the trails on those same mountains. It's worth it to take the climb.
Jesus told the multitude in Luke 14:27-34 that if they wanted to experience the adventure of being His disciple they would first need to count the cost. I hope you'll read the passage yourself, but basically He says to them, "You may have to leave behind someone very important to you to follow me. You're going to have to let go of your preferences and comforts and fears if you want to go where I go. And, I'm not going to lie to you, this journey is going to cost you something. It might get a little scary here and there. It's worth it, but only you can decide if you can let go enough to follow Me."
Are you looking at others who are "doing this thing" with Jesus and thinking, "Now that looks exciting!" but still not willing to lace up your own boots and get on the trail? Are you watching the glory of it all from your back porch, but letting fear keep you from the path that leads to those very vistas?
What are you letting your fears keep you from that God is inviting you to join? Or maybe it's not a fear you need to let go of, but a comfort zone. Let's throw caution and comfort to the wind and set out on a new adventure today.
Let go! It's so worth it!
I know when I'm getting ready to walk into the woods (where all those critters live!) I have to get a little pumped up for the adventure. I thought you could use a little pumping up too so I've hooked you up with a great song I heard on the radio last night. Listen up and let go!