This picture was taken on a backpacking trip that I took with my brother a few months back. My brother, Jonathan, and I decided to tackle part of the Foothills Trail over a 48 hour period. We covered nearly 30 miles with 40 lb packs on our backs, and it may have been the most grueling workout I have ever experienced. At the end of our second day of hiking, we were so exhausted from the long day of hiking that we collapsed on the ground for about 30 minutes before getting up to assemble our campsite. What a day! If my memory serves me right, I think we climbed over 500 stairs and covered nearly 16 miles of terrain that mostly went up.
The thing is, when we finally came to the end of our adventure, neither one of us had regrets for the challenges we had just overcome. Along the trail, we saw some really beautiful bridges, mountain views, and waterfalls. The difficulties were worth the satisfaction that we actually persevered to the end – even though there were moments where I wanted to give up.
I think our faith is like that, too. I have been studying Hebrews, and I'm amazed at the people in Hebrews 11 who never gave up in spite of their circumstances. It would have been easy to look at the immediate and to forget the ultimate, but they hung in there till the end. Even Moses, who was adopted into a royal family, gave up the immediate pleasures for the ultimate glory of honoring God with his life.
Do you have a decision to make? Have you considered the ultimate before giving in to the immediate?