“Though an army may encamp against me, my heart shall not fear; though war may rise against me, in this I will be confident…In the time of trouble He shall hide me in His pavilion; in the secret place of His tabernacle He shall hide me; He shall set me high upon a rock” (Psalm 27:3, 5).
Over a break, I went on a hike up a mountain. The top had a magnificent view, but there was somewhere that had an even better view—a rock formation where stones were stacked like platforms over the cliffs below. Of course, I had to go out and climb on them—after all, what else are you to do with perfectly climbable rocks?
Between me and the vantage point was loose shale, and I had to be very careful to avoid a very long fall, but that wasn’t the only part that gave me concern. Once I reached my goal, the world was a bit more daunting. The rock under my feet was secure, but I had the instinct to drop down to all fours. My brain was convinced that if the slightest breeze didn’t send me to my death, I’d grow overconfident in my amazing standing-on-a-rock prowess and make a fatal misstep.
In reality, I was far safer on the rock than I was on the shale, and I knew that, but my fears still were boisterous enough that I eventually left my perch.
How similar was this experience to walking in the spirit, or trusting in the Lord? Sometimes we reach a spiritual mountain, and the view is glorious! Even when we think we’ve reached the top, the Lord still points out a better view and leads us a bit further, saying, “Hey, stand over there!”
Even if we’re brave enough to follow His direction, it’s very easy to be shaking in fear the whole way. Then, once we get to the pinnacle the Lord has sent us to, what are our greatest threats? Either stumbling in fear from not trusting in the strength of the foundation beneath us, or growing overly confident in our own capabilities, forgetting what brought us to the rock in the first place.
Maybe I’m overanalyzing this experience, but whenever I’ve been in a place of trouble, I do long for the security that I receive and the view I see when I stand on the power and stability that is our rock.