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Sunday, November 20, 2011

Inspired by... mountains


MaunaKea_Reversettvframe Mauna Loa ~ Elevation 13,677ft


"Count it all JOY, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds,

for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness." (James 1:2)


Mauna_Kea Mauna Kea ~ Elevation 13,796ft


The Big Island of Hawaii is made up of five volcanoes. Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa easily account for more than 50% of the island and are two very large, very formidable mountains.

Oft times the trials we face in life seem like these two mountains. Overwhelming and impossible to traverse. Sometimes we try to find our way around the base of the mountain (trial), but we soon become lost and bewildered. The only way to get the mountain behind us, is to go over it.

Trials by their very nature are not welcome adventures. So how are we to count them all JOY, as James commands in the scripture above?

I'd like to share with you an excerpt from J.R.R. Tolkien's THE HOBBIT.

"They were a gloomy party that night, and the gloom gathered still deeper on them in the following days.

...Yet if they had known more about it and considered the meaning of the hunt and the white deer that had happened upon their path, they would have known that they were at last drawing towards the eastern edge, and would soon have come, if they could have kept up their courage and their hope, to thinner trees and places where the sunlight came again.

But they did not know this..."

At least two other times during Bilbo's trials adventures the narrator tells us "if they had known" or "had he but guessed", etc. But Bilbo and the dwarves did not know. And so they were burdened and gloomy and in danger of losing hope. This really spoke to me, hugely, because of what I am experiencing right now and because...

... as Believer's in Jesus Christ we are not like Bilbo and the dwarves. Unseeing and without hope. When we're in the midst of our Mirkwood, our Lonely Mountain or even the dragon's lair...

...we can know and we can trust...

Because God knows. He created this trial, specifically for you or me, to teach us, grow us and mature us into becoming more like Jesus Christ.

"We have that hope as an anchor for our lives, safe and secure." (Heb 6:19)

That is why we can have JOY!

...amidst the sorrows and burdens of life.

Our Pastor explained that sadness and happiness are reactive emotions, whereas Joy is a reflective emotion. We might be experiencing sadness, despair, anger, etc. in our current trial, but as we reflect upon the Truths of God and begin to trust that even though we don't understand, God does and He is working things for our good, we can have JOY in that circumstance.

"For this slight momentary affliction is preparing for us

an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison." (2Cor 4:17)

Chances are you are either in the midst of a trial, coming out of one... or heading into one. My prayer is that these words might encourage and inspire you to determine now, today, to be JOYFUL and embrace what comes as an opportunity to grow nearer to and become more like God.


Speaking from out of the midst...






Sharing inspiration here:


  1. Wonderful post! The challenges that the Lord faces each of us with will improve the character of us all, which in turn, creates joy!

    [Stopping by from Scripture and a Snapshot.]

  2. Beautiful post!

    Hugs, Aimee @ ItsOverflowing.com

  3. Beautiful!
    So very nice to meet you! Here's mine:


    I'd love for you to join my photo blog hop on Mondays called Capturing Beauty.


  4. What a beautiful post. I have only been to Hawaii once about 13 years ago and now I want to return! Thanks for sharing!

  5. So grateful to you, June, for speaking this truth so faithfully, even in the midst of your trials. Blessings, dear friend.

  6. Thank you for the kind comment you left at my blog! I appreciate it when people visit my blog and leave me a comment.

    Would you like to join me sometime in my new blog series, Photo Friday?

    I think that you should try to be joyful in all circumstances. It might be hard at times but if you can find even one thing to be joyful about there will be little healing. Joy is a good topic to talk about. Thank you!


If you read something here that inspired you, I’d love to hear about it. Please know I appreciate every comment! Thanks so much for stopping by! Blessings, June