The Steepest Hill

by Stephanie Olson

I went out for my morning bike ride. A bike ride is a bit like running for me, only less impact. It gives me a feeling of freedom, a chance to enjoy and awe God’s beautiful creation, and time to pray. I love that feeling.

And this morning was no different. The only difference was the change in my route. I decided to bike to a nearby town (that sounds extremely impressive but it’s pretty close to my house).

As I was heading there I noticed pretty quickly it was all downhill. It felt wonderful. I love to get a lot of speed and then fly downhill with the wind in my face and no physical effort whatsoever. At one point I remember thinking to myself, if it’s this fun and fast downhill on my way to the town, it will be a different experience on my way home. Well, needless to say, I was right.

As I turned around to head home, I took one look towards my destination and saw one of the longest, steepest hills in front of me. Now, for those of you who know I live in Nebraska and are thinking, Okay, Nebraska? Really? Hills? Let me just tell you, Omaha, Nebraska is extremely hilly. Ask any runner, bicycler, or person driving a non 4-wheel drive car in the icy winter.

Anywhoo, the hill was ahead of me and as I began to go up the torturous hill, the Lord spoke to my spirit. Stephanie, that trial you have been going through is like this hill. You have already made it through the most difficult part. I know you can see the top of the hill. You are almost there! Hang on! I know all you can see is the steepness right now, but when you make it to the top you will be able to see the other side of that hill. I am with you!

That hill was horrible. It was painful. Cars were whizzing by me and there were times I thought I was going to die. There were those moments that I thought about giving up – just getting off my bike and walking. But I knew I could make it –with God’s help. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. (Philippians 4:13)

But then, after much struggle, I was at the top. Triumph! And as I flew down that hill with the wind in my face I knew that in the earthly trial I was dealing with I was going to overcome through Christ.

As I continued home, there were other hills ahead of me, however, none of them were quite as bad as the first one. None of them seemed quite as steep or quite as long. And with all of the other hills, I knew I could make it. I was able to look back at that last hill and know that I did it before and I could do it again. Just like Jesus. When we are going through our life’s trials and difficulties, we must remember His faithfulness in the past. Remember when He brought us though that last trial. Remember when He walked with us through the pain and suffering.

He will bring us through. It probably won’t be easy, but we won’t be alone either.

These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)

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