CLIMBING THE MOUNTAIN by Kevin Clarke
January 7, 2012
Welcome to 2012 – This year, I believe, God has a mountain for us to climb where we get serious with God and where our lives are transformed (Matthew 28:16). Are we willing to go to that mountain and climb it? Climbing takes effort – it’s not always fun, but when we begin to climb, suddenly we begin to see things that we’ve never seen before. I want to give you five requirements for climbing your mountain.
Having the desire gets us started on our climb (Psalm 37:4). It all starts with desire. Do you want to move onto that higher plane with God? Do you want to know God? A relationship with God – that’s what we need. It’s a close relationship with God that will cause us to be influential people. The bible says this, “but the people who know their God shall be strong, and carry out great exploits” (Daniel 11:32). Why don’t you take a climb up your mountain and have that all important, life transforming encounter with God.
The second thing that we need is drive. Paul said this, “I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:14). We must have quite a lot of drive within us. Starting to climb up the mountain might be easy, but as we go further up the mountain-side, it does become very steep and rather difficult.Progress is slow and we can be discouraged by the difficulties that we face. It’s tough when we’re climbing the mountain, and so we need quite a lot of drive. Talk to any successful businessman, and ask him how he became so successful. He’ll tell you that he had to have the drive inside of him to climb his way to the top.
The third thing that we need is discipline. Paul said this, “But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified.” (1 Corinthians 9:27) What is a disciple? It’s a disciplined one. Before you can go for a climb on a real mountain, you have to train and prepare - in effect become disciples. You have to learn how to use the ice-axe. You have to learn how to self-arrest and what to do with the ropes. When someone falls, it’s not the time to say, “What do I do?” When you’re walking up the mountain, you’re roped with your team mates. If you slip, you count on your teammates to hold you up. You have to be disciplined. Do you have the discipline to climb up to where God wants you to be?
The fourth thing that we need is diligence. It takes one more step. It takes one more day. It takes one more prayer. It takes one more act of faith. It takes one more act of love. It takes one more tithe. It takes one more offering. It takes diligence. You’ve just got to keep on keeping on. “He who has a slack hand becomes poor, but the hand of the diligent makes rich” (Proverbs 10:4).
The fifth thing that we need is determination. In 2012 we have the Olympic Games. Those athletes are so determined. Those swimmers are so determined. Those players are so determined. See how they run. See how they swim. See how they hit that ball. They’re so determined. See how they practice. See how they train. They’re so determined. We do face a challenge. We do have a river to cross. We do have a mountain to climb. Many things will come along to challenge our faith. So be prepared and be determined. Paul said this, “For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified (1 Corinthians 2:2). Paul was saying, “I’m not going to be trapped by the world; I’m not going to be distracted by the world; I’m not going to compromise with the world.”
In 2012, there will be a mountain for you to climb. Do you have what it takes to climb that mountain?