"Faith to move mountains". If you have been in church any length of time, you have no doubt heard that portion of scripture quoted. There is even a popular song proclaiming trust in God even when mountains don't move when we want them to. To be honest this phrase about moving mountains has become so second nature that I forget the significance of it.
We are vacationing in the dessert this week, Palm Springs California to be exact. Life here is so much different than our life in the cornfields of Ohio. Buildings seem to be stuck in the sixties and lifestyles feel so far 'left' that I am shocked they haven't fallen off the edge... But nonetheless I am astounded by the beauty of the dessert and the mountains. In fact, I wonder how many people drive by these same mountains every day, and fail to realize that they are there. Are you following me? Picking up what I am putting down? So then, I wonder, how many of us walk around the same mountains in our spiritual life every day, and just make it a part of our life. How many times do we build our lives AROUND the mountains instead of moving them like the word instructs us to do?
I never realized the massive... massive-ness of a mountain until this week. And to think that this is the figurative language that Jesus used when talking to us about prayer, really makes me think that I have been under-estimating the power of prayer itself. There is no way that anyone in the natural would ever consider trying to move a mountain. Where would you start? Where would you put the debris? You see, it makes much more sense to simply build AROUND the mountain. Or maybe blast a road through it. But never to move it. No way, that would be too difficult. Too large a task. So then, why is this the very thing that the Bible tells us that we can MOVE in the supernatural? And not only can we move it, but this Moving doesn't even require us making a plan to strategically move its remains. Nope, we simply have faith, then SAY to the mountain... and it goes.
There seem to be two keys here. First we have faith (that the mountain can actually move) and then we have to TELL it where to go. You see Jesus didn't just say "Tell the mountain to go away". He told us where to tell it to go. The disciples tried to cast a demon out of a boy and weren't able to, but Jesus did this with no problem. When they asked him why, he told them it was because of their unbelief (Ouch!) and that this certain thing only came out by prayer and fasting. Jesus explained that we have to have faith, and action.
Lets take a peek at Matthew 17:19-21 "Then came the disciples to Jesus apart, and said, Why could not we cast him out? And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you. Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.
So I wonder how much different our lives would look if we started speaking to our mountains, not talking about them. If we acknowledged them as a roadblock standing between us and our destiny, rather than building our lives around them and carving them into our story as a 'given'. Would we stop making excuses for certain things, like "the same temper that your daddy had".. or a "genetically inherited disease" and instead start to speak to these things and tell them to go back to hell where they came from. What if we declared a life of victory and wholeness and peace in the face of our mountains that seem to look oh-so-big.
I challenge you as I challenge myself, to begin to look at our mountains with eyes of prayer, rather than our natural eyes. To begin to speak to the things that cause us grief and strife with our brother and to declare peace in the midst of the storm.
Lord, Please help us To begin to talk to our mountains with faith filled words. Helps us identify these mountains in our life, and let us embrace the courage you have given us to speak directly to these mountains. Let us learn from the people of Israel who journeyed round and round without walking directly to the promised land. Help us live this life to the fullest, and call out those things that stand in our way. Thank you for this joyous life, but more importantly for salvation, -Amen
Until Next Time, Shake off the Shackles.