A friend and I sat on my bed yesterday afternoon talking about how a single event, like a weekend Christian retreat or a missions trip, should not and cannot dictate a person’s passion for life and joy in Christ.
Maybe you can relate to this:
You have a mountain top experience in which you feel this surge of the Holy Spirit flooding your heart with new life and purpose, challenging and growing you significantly over a short period of time. It sets a fire to your soul. It becomes your drive, your motivation. Returning home you’re passionate for Jesus and His calling. You simply can’t believe this incredible sense of fulfillment and peace you have. The time of soul-searching and seeking Christ, ah! they’re just amazing! He’s alive to you like never before!
However months pass and the enthusiasm slowly dies down as you return to the normalcy of day-to-day life. It’s different from what it was when you were away. Whenever you want to feel that spark of life rekindled you retreat to your magical world of memories from that one experience, expecting it to lift back up to that peak. It works sometimes, but not always. Sometimes you even sink lower, down to a rough valley when you recognize that you simply can’t return to those heights. The experience is too far gone. Your memories start to blur. It’s not just an emotional battle. It attacks you spiritually. You gradually forget what the purpose of that time away was even for and who you became, who you committed to be, who changed you.
Good news! It doesn’t have to be that way! This is what my friend and I came to realize together, having both been through this before:
The same Spirit of Christ that filled your heart in that mountain top moment is still alive and working in you every single day.
You must choose to be in the present.
Choose move on with life.
Choose to meet Jesus daily.
Choose to be joyful.
Choose to embrace new lessons, new experiences, and let new people in.
Choose to live.
There’s no doubt in my mind that I’ve been dancing in the shadow of my personal mountain top experience from this past summer in Uganda. The excitement from those 2 months hasn’t worn off yet. So much of what I do and say traces back to something I went through or learned from God during that time. They are good lessons which shaped me for eternity and it’s a wonderful thing that I still regularly pull from that season of growth.
But like I said, life goes on and I need to move on. I know I’ll be in Uganda again in less than 3 months, yet I’m making a conscious choice to live and learn right here, too.