"Hi, I'm your Mom/Dad's friend, Anger. May I come in?"
You reply, "Of course, please come in. Let me take your coat. Sit down and make yourself comfortable. Kids!!! Come meet Anger!!!"
You put on a pot of coffee and prepare a tray of cookies. "Anger" gets comfortable as the two of you, along with your family, get more acquainted--more familiar.
Sounds ridiculous, right? But it happens. Maybe it's not anger, maybe it's fear, worry, doubt, lying, manipulation, pessimism, defiance, blame-shifting, enabling, people-pleasing, or promiscuity. Many of the challenges, "mountains" we are confronted with are generational. They are family patterns and styles of relating that travel from generation to generation. These traits or characteristics have been around so long, they have become like old family friends. We are used to them being around because many of us were introduced to them in our youth.
Yet, you may be hearing the still, small voice of the Spirit of God saying, "This is not a friend. It is a mountain." And in your heart, albeit a harsh reality, you are agreeing with the Spirit of God. We have learned to navigate around the mountain; and rather than living lives of abundance, we are living in perpetual bondage--experiencing fear, distress, frustration, and defeat rather than joy, peace, satisfaction, confidence, and victory.
So how do we move forward? Recognize that authentic and lasting change occurs when we make a decision to leave the familiar as well as acknowledge and speak to the mountains in our lives. If we opt to ignore, blame-shift, avoid, accept, maneuver around, minimize, or dress-up our mountain--it will remain.
Consider the following individuals who applied this truth:
- Gideon: Destroyed his father's altars (Judges 6:25)
- Abram: Left everything that was familiar to go where God called him (Genesis 12:1)
- Ruth: Left Moab to live with her mother-in-law, Naomi. She went on to marry Boaz (Ruth 1:16)
Obstacles move when we speak and pray in faith with power and authority as Jesus outlined in Matthew 21:21. Consider how the following spoke to their mountain:
- Caleb: Spoke to/confronted fear that was in the camp (Numbers 13)
- David: Confronted the Philistine army and Goliath as he malevolently labeled, cursed, and name-called (I Samuel 17)
- Esther: Confronted personal fear and insecurity that enabled her to go before the king unannounced on behalf of her people (Esther 4)
Questions/Thoughts for Reflection
1. Are there mountains in your life? If so, name them.
2. Why are they present? Pinpoint the origin.
3. For every mountain you identified, find a scripture.
Father, in the name of Jesus, thank you for giving us the power and authority to speak to the mountains in our lives using your Word. Thank you for the internal disruption and feelings of discomfort. It's an indicator that you are at work. You are bringing an awareness to what has become familiar. You have called us to greater. You desire that we live lives of abundance and victory.
Thank you for the promise that as we pray in faith, mountains are being uprooted and removed. We receive that now in Jesus' name. Amen and so be it according to your Word.