from December 2015–
Most of [Jesus’] ministry was performed in the towns and cities by the seashore,
but He loved the hills more and at nightfall would frequently seclude Himself in their peaceful heights.
[In the same way], every life that desires to be strong must have its “Most Holy Place” (Ex. 26.33) into which only God enters.
—Streams in the Desert
The haze of an unexpected afternoon thunderstorm began to settle in over our city, so, after more research on Bangkok—anticipation growing greater every day—I gathered up myself and my computer and settled on my now cold covered balcony.
And I wrote. The thunder rolled and so did my hands across the keys.
I began penning a story, wrapping words around the beauty of that place and the stories of those we encountered. I still have many more words to write, but that is what this balcony is for, these spaces of silence and solitude, these white documents that somehow spark both work & rest in my heart.
These are my hills where I meet God. These moments on this balcony. Or on my bed, as is the case as I write this this morning, a minute miracle of disruption in my normal morning routine to be with Him—a common hillside habit.
Because this morning, He speaks—love these hills more than the valleys of ministry. And so I must be obedient to write what He speaks. If I’m to love these hills more, I must love Him more, and if I must love Him more, I must capture all that He and His love is whispering in my ear. I want to remember, recall, relive, and re-give these words of His, these hillside moments with Him.
We need these hills more because we need Him more. This is where we receive Him, so that we are enabled to pour Him OUT in the valleys. Some days, as with Jesus when the 5000 approached Him as He tried to take His disciples into the hills and desolate places to recover from their mission, we keep pouring out and we miss a retreat. But most days, He gives us space in which to meet Him. And we must not neglect it. We must love these hills more than the things we need to get up from this place to do. We are, first and foremost, called to be with Him, and then to be sent out.
Love these hills more.
Love to be with Him more.