Mount Everest is named after the British general, Sir George Everest and is the tallest mountain in the world at 29,028 feet–one-half mile above sea level and equivalent to twenty Empire State buildings.
Four thousand people have attempted to climb the mountain, but only 660 have been successful. Tragically, 142 have died trying.
Our lives are like Mount Everest. Both go through resistance when we are being elevated spiritually. Those who desired to reach the top of Mount Everest endured many adverse conditions, some controllable and some not. The mountain is not easy to climb, and the high altitude can prove treacherous to the human body. The higher the altitude, the more resistance. Elevation brings a challenge or unknown certainty, whether it is in the natural or the spiritual realm. But when God elevates us, it is not contingent on our ability, but on Him alone.
Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him among his brothers: and the Spirit of the Lord came upon David from that day forward. So Samuel arose and went to Ramah.~1 Samuel 16:13 NASB
We have two choices when God elevates us: we can move to where God desires, or we can stay on the same level. Christ desires to change our mindset, our thought process, and our traditional ways of doing things.
In David’s story, he moves from a lowly shepherd to being the king of two nations. Had David only seen himself as a shepherd boy, he would never have become a king. Because He came from a family of shepherds, David had to show courage to reach beyond this thought pattern.
We cannot reach a higher elevation if we are not willing to give up tradition. Those who climbed the great mountain moved beyond the low point of normalcy to reach a place where they could not see but still believed they would arrive. In the natural, this takes faith, and in the spiritual realm, it also takes faith.
I do not regard myself as having taken hold of it yet, but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.~Philippians 3:14 NASB
When climbing Mount Everest, there are various “oxygen levels” that we have. We could perish if we do not adapt to this new environment. The higher the elevation, the thinner the air is, which can cause suffocation for the climber without the proper equipment and training. No one can climb the mountain without the appropriate gear. Likewise, we can know God provides help in times of spiritual elevation.
The love of the Father permanently seals our path to higher heights. He provides what we need to allow us to endure. The resistance found in elevation builds us up, and the Father already knows that we can only make it with His help and strength. We look beyond what is challenging, as the wind picks up in our lives, knowing we can rest because He has equipped us with the required tool to survive. That tool is the Holy Spirit’s empowerment flowing and working for us to travel to higher heights.
Often, those in our closest circles don’t want God to elevate us, such as when King Saul kept David with him and would not let him return to Bethlehem. Saul made David a commander over the men of war not only because he was gifted but also because he was intimidated by the favor people had towards David. Saul was comfortable with David if he was regulating the elevation.
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.~Jeremiah 29:11 NASB
We must keep our eyes on the Lord rather than those around us. Even Jesus experienced this. The Sanhedrin accepted Him if He did what they deemed He should, but as soon as He began performing miracles and breaking tradition, they turned on Him. But He overcame, and so can we.
We can even hold our own progress back. A deeper understanding of the Lord costs us. Discomfort is part of this process, but the reward is in the elevation.
Elevation must come from a spirit of humility. Climbing Mount Everest takes patience and a calm, steady temperament because numerous factors can affect our ability to make it to the top. Out of those four thousand climbers who attempted to summit Mount Everest, some just gave up and turned around. Those who kept their focus made it.
Where is one area you struggle to see God? Is this an area where you need more humility?
Lord God, help me in those areas where I am seeking elevation with the wrong motivation. Fix my mind so that the only thing that matters is following Your plan. Let me not seek elevation for selfish reasons but only to glorify Your Name.
In Jesus’ name, amen.
Copyright 2020: Elevation Like Mount Everest: Charles E. Maldon, Jr.: All Rights Reserved