[shoveling the mountain]

[shoveling the mountain]

I tell you the truth, if you had faith even as small as a mustard seed, you could say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it would move. Nothing would be impossible.

Matthew 17:20, NLT

I have read an article the other day written by a guy who claims to be an atheist. He raised important points in his rant against a law that has been passed in Russia (or about to be passed) that you cannot offend believers’ faith. (Don’t ask me how they are going to judge who got offended and how it would be proved document-wise. It’s a dumb law.)

The paragraph that got my attention, however, was where he said, “But who are the faithful ones? Didn’t Jesus say that those even with a tiny faith can move mountains? I haven’t seen any mountains move by faith, therefore by their own standards all those believers are worthless.”

I mentioned this to a friend who originally posted the link to the post.

“You know, my youth pastor once said, ‘God can move mountains miraculously, but sometimes He gives us a shovel to move the mountain patiently with our own hands.'”

“So if you have a shovel, why would you need God?” asked my friend, who is not a believer himself.

To be honest, I got lost as to what to tell him. Deep down I knew the answer, but somehow I could not formulate it in a way that would make sense.

On Saturday night, my pastor called me and asked if I can do devotions in the morning. I agreed and started thinking and praying about what should I talk about.

I usually have a few thoughts written down as notes in my iPhone, so I looked through those. Nope… nothing seemed fitting.

I looked though the blog entries. Nothing. There were good topics I could talk about, but nothing felt… right.

On Sunday morning, I came to Church early for a rehearsal. We prepared the songs, had some coffee, and the time for Sunday morning devotionals was coming close. “What should I speak about?” I kept thinking…

And then I remembered the discussion with my friend on Thursday… What I also remembered was a old joke I once heard. So I stood in front of our morning prayer group:

We are often accused that our faith is useless. It’s tiny. We are accused that we cannot move the mountains. And when we say that God gives us a shovel, we are asked “Why do we need God then?”… But if we would not have God, who would give us a shovel to move that mountain in our lives? Where are we going to get it?

And besides, He does move mountains by miracle.

He demolishes mountains of doubt. He moves mountains of fear in our lives. He got rid of the huge Everest of death in our lives.

People always preferred to see physical representation of His power. Even when Jesus was here, all they wanted was miracles – and then some more miracles. (Even after He just performed one.)

Yet the realm where He works usually is hidden from eyes.

It’s a realm of hearts.

I smiled as I found out that the last song that Sunday was “Mighty to Save,” for the lyrics go like this:

Saviour, He can move the mountains
For my God is mighty to save, He is mighty to save
Forever, author of Salvation
Where He rose and conquered the grave, Jesus conquered the grave.

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