(excerpt from “Closer Today Than Yesterday,” by Sharon Gonzales)
I will go my way to the mountain of myrrh and to the hill of frankincense. Song of Solomon 4:6
As I round the corner my eyes turn to the snowy mountain range before me. Encouraged by Him, I imagine that I am ready to lunge forward into the next part of the journey. Suddenly, dark clouds blow in and I pull back. I want to follow Him, but my feet resist.
Hindering mountains in life block my advancement in faith and obedience. Sometimes they are mountains that I see. At other times they are mountains I hear. Each time I allow these mountains to hinder me, they seem to grow larger. Fears feed the mountains, seeming to give them a life of their own.
My Savior points the way to death. He joins me in pouring out the liquid myrrh over my fears and doubts. Before me the mountains are transformed. Strangely, they now beckon me. They cry out to be conquered. No longer am I afraid.
Jesus, wonderful Shepherd, provides food in a knapsack for my journey over the mountains. Inside it I find a peculiar substance with a familiar aroma. Frankincense, the breath of life from prayer, promises to strengthen me along the way. He counsels me to eat this spice regularly, daily. It will be my manna in the desert.
Yes, Beloved Shepherd, I will follow Your marked path. I will go the way that You have prepared for me, the specialized path that You have designed. No one of this earth can go with me. Alone, I choose the full cost of intimacy with you. As I tread upon the mountainous land, Your fragrant Presence abides with me, strengthening me with each ascending step. What will we find beyond this mountain range?
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