Everybody is always seeking that mountaintop experience.
So many people watch awards shows to see their favorite movie actor, TV beauty, or singer achieve the pinnacle of success. Every March I fight back a little tear as “One Shining Moment” plays and the new NCAA basketball champs are crowned.
Whether it’s winning an Oscar, getting a platinum album, or putting on a championship ring, most people have an ultimate goal – a mountaintop – they are trying to reach.
What about you?
What is your goal? The pinnacle for you? Your mountaintop?
Is it reaching a certain goal weight by a specific date? Maybe it’s being able to run a 10k or even a marathon.
Perhaps you will feel like you’ve really “made it” when you get the promotion you’ve been shooting for or completely pay off your mortgage. Or, maybe seeing your kid graduate from college would really feel like the greatest accomplishment possible.
I think setting goals is vital, but I want you to think about something.
Have you ever hiked to an actual mountaintop?
A couple of years ago my husband and I hiked the tallest mountain in Vermont – Mount Mansfield. We made it to the top in a couple of hours and were in awe of the amazing views.
It was truly breathtaking (in more ways than one).
As we climbed up the very (very) steep trails, we made our way up grassy ski runs, through babbling creeks, and around some pretty tall, old trees.
Eventually we climbed high enough to get beyond the trees and found ourselves hiking on open rocky surfaces with amazing views all around.
And then we made it to top!
With no trees around, we were in awe of the 360 degrees of God’s beautiful creation. Not many other people were there – not near as many as we had encountered in the parking lot before our climb – so the top was quiet and serene.
The top was special, but something really struck me that day.
The mountaintop was great. Our view was amazing. We had achieved our goal and reached the summit. But, the trees were missing. As a matter of fact, no significant vegetation was visible along the rocky part of the trail above the tree line.
And then it hit me.
The very same thing is true in our own lives as well.
All of our growth happens on the way toward reaching our goals. It is in the struggle to reach the pinnacle that real change, real progress, and real growth occurs.
As we climb our own steep trails, wade through rough waters, and work our way around the big, tall obstacles before us, we see ourselves really come to life and become better.
So should we not shoot for the mountaintop?
I believe we absolutely should!
But, we need to remember to enjoy the life and the growth occurring in and around us on or way. We shouldn’t rush to the top and miss out on the powerful things that occur through the process of getting there.
I also believe we need to have a plan for once we get there.
Even when Moses had his mountaintop experience with God when he received the 10 Commandments, he couldn’t just stay there. He had to share his experience and bring the stone tablets back to the Israelites.
It wasn’t until Moses shared what he learned during his journey to and his time at the top of the mountain that the others could reap the benefits.
So, what does all this have to do with you?
1. Remember that growth can’t happen at the top of the mountain, so enjoy the journey toward reaching your goal as much as actually reaching it.
2. Have a plan for what’s next after you reach your goals. They say it’s lonely at the top for a reason. What’s next?
3. Make sure you bring what you’ve learned back to others so they can grow and experience something amazing, too.