Have you ever experienced a moment of joy or rapture you wished would never end? Perhaps it was on an actual mountaintop, where you were temporarily lifted out of yourself or so overwhelmed by beauty that tears came.
After the disciples’ experience of mountaintop glory was over, Jesus told them not to be afraid, even though they were going down to Jerusalem with him to face suffering and death. One pastor joked that a good sermon title for this would be: “It’s all downhill from here!”
Maybe you feel as if your life is going downhill, without much prospect of joy from now on. The good news is that being joined to Christ, every downhill is always a preliminary to an uphill. It’s the New Testament paradigm of death and resurrection, a kind of “roller-coaster” theology. As we follow Christ, every valley will lead to a mountain peak and every death in our lives will lead to a resurrection and a new start. And if not in this life, God has promised that after we die there will be a resurrection with a capital R. Like a moon shot, we will be lifted into a realm of undreamed-of glory and unimaginable splendour. A forever mountaintop experience!
Dear God, go with us in our griefs and give us faith in the glory to come. Amen. — JH