This post is brought to you by Jillian Desrosier. A sophomore in SIS, Jillian has a tendency to bring up tattoos in conversation, avoid studying in favor of coffee dates, and would rather read Steinbeck than talk about politics. She has never been apple picking. Anyone should feel free to rectify that situation.
When we stand on top of a mountain, in the middle of the creations of our Creator, it is easy to feel His breath in every gust of wind and see His warmth in every shaft of sunlight. It is easy to lift our eyes to gloriously blue skies and pray that His kingdom come down. His power is apparent in the chill of the night and His grace can be found in late-night laughter over sticky s’mores. His voice is loud in the silence of Retreat.
But what about on the day that we return? What about in the following weeks? Is it so easy to feel His breath when I’m late for class? What about His grace when that laughter turns into late night deadline panic? Is His voice as loud in the tension of the library?
After Retreat, I found myself searching for the residue of the “mountain top experience” in all the places I’ve now realized are the places I’ve tied to God. I attended church on Sundays, I poured into a Bible study on Mondays, I went to prayer on Wednesdays, and I sang my heart out at TNW on Thursdays. I had coffee with our hipster pastor. I ate dinner with my small group leader. But what about when I’m on my own? In the places that I don’t view as His? In the places I see as separate?
I realized that there are areas of my life that I figure are simple enough to handle on my own. But the more I try to handle them on my own, the less smoothly they go. The more I discover how broken I am, the wider and deeper and higher God’s love becomes to me. I am astounded and blown away because outside of that grace I am worthless and my efforts to become more “churchified” fall amazingly short. And what I’ve come face-to-face with is that I’ve been trying to be a Christian instead of building a relationship with a mighty God.
There is a massive difference between being a Christian and walking with Christ. I think that as a Christian, I try to do a really good job of attending all the times collectively dedicated to God, but in my moments of doubt or craziness or loneliness or peace I trap myself inside a world without Him.
That mountain top? That’s everywhere we meet with Him. That’s every time we turn around. Every time we allow Him to celebrate with us in the small stuff and cry with us over the hard stuff. It’s a relationship that moves and grows as we talk to Him and it is far greater and far more beautiful than visiting the places I used to confine Him to.