Standing before me is a mountain I have never asked to climb. It isn’t one I want to die on, nor is it one I’d like the world to witness. But lo and behold, here we all are standing before mountains we never asked for and lives we never envisioned, with troubles at every valley and short-lived glory at the peaks.
And the wind.
It can be a force to be reckoned with or a push forward. It can be changing and forceful, and like the pockets of the ocean as they rise and fall in the waves, so is the wind. It hides and weaves, hits like a wall and pushes like its strength is unceasing.
On the mountain, the wind can make all things better and all things worse, sometimes all at once.
I read the other day that leaders must lead. They mustn’t sit idly by when someone needs to stand up and say something. Silence is agreeing that whatever is happening is fine.
While I was sitting in my living room, scrolling through my phone, I stopped there: Leaders must lead. I looked up at the wall in front of me. The wallpaper seams can still be seen under layers of paint from decades ago. This house has seen many faces before mine because this house is older than I am. I studied the seams and thought, “Who has sat here before me and wondered if history would be kind to them?” I was looking around and behind me, searching for the leader that I know was sitting right in my seat.
And here’s the thing: I am not just anyone.
As a woman who stands in Christ’s blood, I set myself to a standard that is to God and God alone.
You see, this moment we are in is crucial. And I’m afraid most of us are scared that what is familiar to us will be lost, or what has always been must continue to be. If you think that isn’t you, I think you’re lying to yourself. Because it’s me. It’s me, looking in the mirror, seeing where I am and the people I’m with, thinking, Why would we change what has always seemed to be right?
I imagine Jesus is looking at His Church wondering who she thinks she is.
His Church isn’t one made up of people who won’t listen to people of another race. His Church isn’t made up of people who yell horrid things over a keyboard. His Church isn’t made up of people who value one type of person over another. His Church isn’t made up of people who see “American” and see the epitome of God’s creation. His Church isn’t made up of just us, and I’m afraid none of you believe that.
There’s too many people we have overlooked. There’s too many who are crying out in righteous anger, and too many who are willing to ignore it because it doesn’t look like your anger.
Too many mountains. Too many burdens I wasn’t made to carry.
We can’t fight every battle. But we can agree that there are battles that must be lost and battles we can certainly win.
We often don’t ask for mountains. We look at them and disdain them, as though they are the bane of our existence and only show our weakness. But there, where we are crawling with fingers gripping the rocks and climbing because we must go higher, we become strong. The wind will hit like waves, throwing my hair around my face, pushing me to the next step, giving me breath to see the moment I need to be in.
We don’t ask for trial. But without it, we don’t know God. Without it, we don’t know how to become stronger. With it, we can see what the wind can make of us.