I get very few Sundays off from work, so I was excited to learn I was “on call” this past Sunday. I thought it meant time for me to develop a message Adonai had been brewing all week on the new month. Instead, Abba had an entirely different lesson in mind.
In the pics below, you can see that the day was for my husband. He was so happy that I didn’t have to go into work, as he had an off-road Jeep day planned. Though what I wanted to do was stay home and write, my husband was the priority. By putting him first, God blew me away with a living parable. I am still awe struck by the goodness of the LORD and how He can teach His truth in ways we never imagine.
Climbing a Mountain
In order to climb the rocky and muddy terrain of an east TN mountain off-road in a 4×4 (notice the 4’s CG students!), one has to AIR DOWN their tires.
This sounds counterintuitive at first glance. Our great big tires with nearly 60 pounds of pressure needed to be deflated to about 15 pounds of pressure. Once released, they looked nearly flat, and much smaller than normal.
Who looks at that and thinks, “Now we are ready to climb a mountain!”
But, that RELEASE is exactly what enabled our Jeep to traverse through deep muddy ruts, climb boulders, and creep up rocky terrains as if they were nothing. Deflating the tires increased our traction and grip. It was like wearing slip resistant shoes with invisible cleats.
I was amazed by how easy (and fun) it was! But, we also had an experienced guide leading us in his own Jeep. Truly, if we weren’t able to watch him climb over the boulders and navigate the deep ditches, we would have likely turned back in fear of not making it or damaging our vehicle.
The driver leading us was named Clint. The next morning, Adonai had me look up the meaning of his name. It means a “rocky cliff, a hill.” What are the odds that our guide’s name would represent the very thing we were doing? And, that we needed to follow him in order to be successful? Several times he jumped out of his Jeep and acted as our “spotter,” telling us exactly which rock to place our tire on to climb up and out of precarious positions. (Can you see a reflection of Yeshua in this?!)
After reaching the top of the mountain and a real, smooth manmade road, we stopped to air the tires back up. (These guys carry air compressors for this purpose.) I couldn’t help but to think that we reach Shavuot the same way – deflated of self to gain an infilling of God’s Spirit. As we were driving home, I pondered about this process in light of the second month.
Iyar is our climb up to the summit of Shavuot. While we tend to think that we can’t get anywhere with low or flat tires, God knows better. Now, I know better too. You can’t climb a mountain with full tires. If you try, all you’ll do is sit and spin in the mud or bounce off of rocks and likely topple your vehicle.
Low tires (think humility – lack of ego – the thing we removed during Passover week) are the wheels that give one feet like a hind or mountain goat. They are the sure footing that can climb boulders with slippery mud without sliding or losing control. The views from this vantage point are amazing. With all our “hot air” released, we really can trek effortlessly over treacherous terrain that most stumble over.
This links early fruit fruits (of barley) to the first fruits of wheat at Shavuot. Each day is marked and counted. Each is a step up the mountain. The more we release self, ego, pride, and anything that puffs us up, the easier the climb, the better the view, and the more the obstacles appear to be a fun adventure instead of an impossible pass.
During this month, the sanctification process that began during the week of Matzah continues. If you find deep ruts, muddy waters, giant boulders, or even rocky walls in your path, and this invokes feelings of being overwhelmed, remember the hind. Remember how a 4×4 operates. All four tires are given power to turn and move, but not before releasing most of their own air.
In life, especially at appointed seasons, we must do the same. We get to the Mount of Revelation nearly empty of self in order to receive and be filled with the life giving Spirit of Adonai.
Jeep folks call getting a new set of tires, getting “new shoes.” In Ephesians 6, the armor of God includes one’s “shoes.”
“…and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace..”
To shod is to bind under, to put on. Verse 15 says that one must put on these “new shoes” WITH the preparation of the gospel of peace. The two are bound together. The IVP Bible background Commentary says that these shoes enable one to “advance toward the enemy undistracted about what they might step on; this gear is essential to one’s ‘preparation’ for battle.” Now, I can add that these shoes also help one climb higher with sure footing to reach the summit, a figure of Adonai’s Throne.
The LORD taught me this lesson in a profound way through my husband’s love of his Jeep, lol. Don’t you just love how Adonai speaks – all the time – if we will just submit and listen? Shoes, even the ones that our Jeep wears, determines the outcome of our journey.
I can spiritually see all of your beautiful feet and the lovely shoes in which Adonai covers each delicate toe. They are absolutely precious to Him. He desires that you climb every rock, boulder, and mountain with the ease of a hind’s feet. I believe most of you are wearing these shoes already.
But there is only one way to perceive the climb without trepidation and fear. Release your own air. Let it all out, and you’ll find that the shoes He has fitted you with have far more protection and grip than you ever imagined. What once seemed impossible, will become an exhilarating off-road adventure through “a land not sown.”
Isaiah 52:7 (TLV) How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who announces shalom, who brings good news of happiness, who announces salvation, who says to Zion, “Your God reigns!”