Traffic is light and so am I relatively, before I start the day’s eating! Living on the edge of a village I can amble to the crest of a hill and trot back down while it’s quiet and still, just a few birds or distant farm animals stirring.
Today the sun was up but mist lay in some low areas. Still, from the top you can see a hint of the ‘patchwork’ effect people see from a plane, the squares of green and gold where they’ve been harvesting this week. Beautiful.
It may be a simple thought but in order to enjoy the view as you trot back down you must first ascend the hill, which is much slower and can be quite painful as your heart and lungs and joints conspire to remind you of your age. But it’s worth it. You feel you’ve earned your toast with butter and marmalade!
This morning I was thinking how a lot of the rewards we enjoy come with a practical price tag. The downhill costs an uphill climb, fitness requires some discipline and exercise.
God’s grace is a free gift in Christ but we have to exercise our faith to access and benefit from it. We’ll never enjoy the relief of forgiveness unless we admit our stupid defiance of our Maker and turn from it. We’ll never know what God promises if we don’t read the Bible. We’ll never experience the help of the Spirit if we don’t commit to follow obediently, pray and seek His guidance.
Consider what Paul writes in Colossians 1 v 29: ‘That’s why I work and struggle so hard, depending on Christ’s mighty power that works in me.
It might feel uphill in the short term but we’ll be glad when we find ourselves warmed up and running in our Master’s strength, for His kingdom and glory!