Thursday, November 5, 2009

A Little Past the Top of the Hill

A little past the top of the hill
We're called to climb in the path of God's will,
The burdens of journey we carry them still
But He waits to refresh, just past the top of the hill.

The climb is a hard one this side of the hill
And success in the effort seems less than our skill,
But we're given command, and continue the drill
Until we are told we're past the top of the hill.

Sometimes in our climb past the top of the hill
We're set by some things that make us feel ill,
But if we would make it through this moment's chill
We'd find a blest healing past the top of the hill.

O climber, don't give up this side of the hill.
Keep climbing, though burdens seem ever to fill
Your mind, instead of God's passion to thrill,
When you reach just a little past the top of the hill

Now, not all we will face past that side of the hill
Will thrill us or skill us, for its intention's to kill,
But if we'd continue our Lord's will to fulfil
We'll find renewed vision past the top of the hill.

I was reading from II Samuel and came across this passage in chapters 15 and 16, where David was facing the threat against his throne by his son, Absalom, who was conspiring against him. In fleeing with his household, David seeks to avoid being captured by his son. As he comes to accend Mount Olivet, with head covered and feet bare, he does so with weeping. All the people following him also ascend in the same spirit, with weeping. When he came to the top of the mount, he worshipped God. After receiving word of the activity in Jerusalem, David is "a little past the top of the hill" (16:1), when he is met with donkey's laden with food for those with him. They were refreshed for the continued journey and ultimately, the defeat of the conspiracy.

The hill of progress that must be climbed is often hard and we wonder if it is worth the trouble. David's heart ws burdened with the rebellion of Absalom, but "a little past the top of the hill" he found refreshment, and though the problem still lay before him, he went forward. The struggle upward with burdens which seem too much, need the awareness that "just a little past the top of the hill" there is respite, a repast, a renewal of heart and strength to continue in the midst of even stones being thrown at us by those who do not follow the right path. (16:5-6)

Be encouraged today, dear friends, as you climb the hills in adversity's wake. God will be there to give you refreshment.


Amber said...

This was t.i.m.e.l.y., Daddy.


(Oh..I was wondering when you were going to show back up again!! I'd been missing you on here!!!)

Tiffani said...

Hey Jim-Dad!

It's Tiffani....and I just want you to know I'm available for adoption!! ;)

I adore your daughter like she's my own kin! I would've come much sooner, if I'd have realized you had a blog!

I loved your words here today! I love how the phrase is "a little PAST the top"...sometimes we have to push through that little extra mile to feel relief, not just mount the obstacle but overcome (go a bit further). And, that's when we're probably MOST tired at the summit...

Thank you for sweet encouragement again soon!!

Mich said...

Love you dad!

Jim said...

Sorry to have been so long - it's been a busy first of the year with the church and my Old Testament course.

I hadn't really thought of the "timeliness" of the blog until I added a picture a few minutes ago. I'd been searching for a scene of the mountains around Jerusalem. And found it. I now realize that where we are going to be in Israel in March - the Mount of Olives and Gethsemane - is the place I've been assigned to lead the tour group of pastors in studies of Jesus in Gethsemane, His Triumph Entry and Ascension from the Mount. It will be videoed and recorded with background to enhance the studies that I and the other pastors do on the various sites.

Thanks to "my" girls for your quick comments.


Jo said...

Reminds me a little of the book you gave me a while back--"Hinds' Feet On High places".
The main character is striving onward and upward as she was instructed to do. Now and again, she wavered, wondering if she could go on. But, she did continue, and reached her goal. I need to read it's been a while.
Quite a lesson, that book (and the poem in your blog).

Does a sis qualify as one of "your girls?" lol

Jim said...

To Jo,
Yes, quite a book. Did you read the sequel yet? Or did I give it to you? I've got a copy I'll give you. It's called "Mountains of Spices" - It has the rest of the story.

Yes, you are definitely "one of the girls!"