I laugh as this post title reminds me of Bilbo Baggins’ Book title “There and Back Again, A Hobbit’s Tale” (thus the picture from Hobbiton). Anyhow, back to this blog post.
I recently had a Mountaintop experience which was immediately followed by falling into one of the deepest pits I have been in, in quite some time. I was debating about blogging about my experience but was unsure I should share it. I was thinking again about sharing my experience when suddenly the song Hills and Valleys by Tauren Wells started playing on KLove.
I had never heard it before and in hearing it at the exact moment I was thinking about blogging this particular experience, I KNEW it was confirmation that I must share it. So, if this is for you, here you go! I pray that sharing this with you will encourage you and help you in your daily walk on this planet.
It all started when I took God on a date, well, at least this round trip started that way, I have taken many trips like this over the years. I had an evening to myself at home. I went directly home from work knowing I was going to spend my solitary night in prayer and in the Word of God. I made a cup of tea and took a seat at my devotion table (or my “devotionarium” as my dear husband has dubbed it). As I sat there with my cup of tea, my heart began to beat faster. My intention was to pray, read my Bible and listen to what God had to tell me.
It honestly felt like I was meeting God for a date and it felt like a first date. My heart began to beat faster and I felt awkward, just like I would on a first date. The fact that my heart was racing, as if it was a first date, was a little disappointing to me. It highlighted the fact that I don’t meet with God often enough to maintain a close personal relationship. But, as God tends to be, He was extremely gracious. I offered up my heart to Him, asked for His help to continue to seek Him and grow in relationship with Him. He answered me by covering my heart with a deep peace.
I spent the rest of my evening with God, listening to Christian music and reading my Bible. I could feel He was with me in so many ways during this time together, I can hardly explain the all-encompassing comfort that it gave me. I knew I had spent my time just as intended and the resulting peace and comfort that filled my spirit made it a Mountaintop experience.
Then, the next day happened. I woke up that following morning on the wrong side of the bed. It seemed every single thing I touched that day went sideways. I didn’t feel well physically, which led to making poor eating choices. Which, in turn, led to me feeling even worse. I felt emotionally and physically exhausted. I was at the end of my patience and near tears, all day. I felt so bad that I reasoned with myself that I “deserved” to spend the evening sitting on my couch blindly watching a random TV program and doing absolutely nothing!
After arriving home and executing my “sitting on my couch doing nothing” plan, I did not feel better, surprise! Instead, the strife in my mind continued, in fact, it worsened. I kept hearing I wasn’t good enough and I wasn’t worthy of the time I’d spent with God on the prior evening. I felt shame that I could even imagine I was worthy of that close personal relationship and most of all I felt God’s (supposed) displeasure with me.
I let all those feelings soak into my spirit and ended up in a low place or what I call a PIT. Unfortunately, it didn’t end there. I struggled with those thoughts the entire evening and went to bed in one of the worst moods imaginable. The next day I went to an early morning yoga class, which typically helps me. However, I was so physically unwell from my poor choices the day before that I felt worse after my class. My mood continued to decline. I was frustrated and near tears the entire day. The following day I could hardly even talk without crying. The worst part was I couldn’t explain why I felt so bad. My husband asked if he could help me and I had nothing to suggest because there was nothing that he could do for me.
Some particularly awful and vivid images came to my mind that I had to actively rebuke and shut down. My breathing was shallow and my heart was again racing but this time it was a physical reaction to my low spirit. It was all I could do to hold myself together, praying to God that this mood and darkness would pass.
By the next day, my mood had lightened and I could again see the light at the end of the tunnel. I spent time in God’s Word and heard His positive voice overwriting the negative flood I had allowed to overtake me. I had renewed my mind and set my focus on what God, and God alone, thinks of me. That is actually a simple thing to focus on, because God loves me, period, no matter what! Since this experience, I have been actively looking towards God and have felt the light of His presence overwhelming the darkness within me.
This experience left me wondering how others handle such forceful attacks. I believe in God and I have a strong faith. I have spent years learning and accepting all the good things God thinks of me and refusing to listen to the negative input from the enemy. Yet, even with all my “God-knowledge”, I fell into this deep pit.
This experience was a wake-up call for me. It has made me realize that I am not invincible to the enemy and that a full-on spiritual attack can quickly take me down to a pit. I need to spend the time to be one on one with God, to have my heart and spirit filled with His truth. People often think that if you are a believer that life will be easy breezy, when, in fact, it can be the exact opposite. The devil tends to focus his energy on those that are advancing the Kingdom of God. It is only WITH God that we can defend and ward off attacks like this one.
If you have ever had a similar experience, I want to encourage you that you are not alone! God is with you ALWAYS and FOREVER and won’t leave you in a pit or valley forever. If you find yourself currently in a pit, cry out to Him, focus on the many blessings you have (even in the deep pit) and KNOW that this too shall pass. Cry your tears, wipe your eyes and wait for the Joy.
Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.