Monday, June 4, 2018
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Okay, the plan was flawless. They told me that Cadillac Mountain was the first place you could see the sunrise in the United States. And my job, of course, was to provide wonderful memories and special experiences for my children. We were vacationing in Maine, and I was determined to let them have this thrill. Somehow, they didn't seem as excited about it as I was; must have been a maturity thing I guess. Well, why wasn't my wife excited then? Anyway, I carefully checked the weather forecast every day until I was sure we would have a clear morning to see the sunrise. I made everyone go to sleep early. I woke everybody up at 3:00 A. M. We were in a campground and I was afraid the kids would wake up complaining and waking up the neighbors, so I had a doughnut ready to stuff into each little mouth-including mine. I bundled everyone into the car and up we drove to the top of Cadillac Mountain. I kept checking my watch, waiting for that magic moment of the scheduled sunrise, and the moment came. No sun. We waited and we waited. Surprise! The weatherman was wrong. We saw a distinctly unmemorable cloudrise.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "The Problem With Mt. Happiness."
We're on Indian reservations a lot, working with a wonderful team of young Native Americans, our On Eagles' Wings team. And the operative word you often hear to describe reservation young people is "hopelessness." They feel like there's no hope of things ever changing. Not long ago, I was in a very different setting, speaking to some wealthy and powerful business leaders. Later, I spoke at a meeting of their wives. I mean, we were in one of the wealthiest counties in America. After I spoke, one of the ladies there said, "Ron, I can describe what life is really like here in two words: hopelessness and despair."
Amazing. Despair at what many would consider the bottom of Mt. Happiness, and despair at the top, too. If you're at the bottom, you assume you're not happy because you don't even have a chance on Mt. Happiness. If you're halfway up, you figure you're unfulfilled because you're not all the way there yet. But what if you're at the top and you still don't have what you thought was at the top? You either sedate yourself so you don't have to think about it, or you jump off. That's what the leading physician in a major city did just a few years ago. He literally jumped off the highest building in the city.
I don't know where you are in climbing Mt. Happiness. But if that hole in your heart is still there, if you know deep inside that something you were made for is still missing, then our word for today from the Word of God is for you. In Isaiah 55, beginning with verse 2, God says: "Why spend money on what is not bread and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen to Me and eat what is good and your soul will delight in the richest of fare...Seek the Lord while He may be found; call on Him while He is near." See, it's God we're made for. It's God we've been needing all along. He's the only One who can fill the God-shaped hole in your heart.
And He's only reachable one way - through His Son, Jesus Christ. Because it took His Son's death on the cross to pay for a lifetime of running your life your way instead of doing it God's way. He died for your sin so you don't have to. So your sins can be erased from God's book, you can finally experience the love and the wholeness that only He can give you.
Ultimately, there are no answers on Mt. Happiness. It's the wrong mountain. There's only one mountain where you can find what you've spent a lifetime looking for. It's called Skull Hill in the Bible. It's the place where Jesus' cross was, where He died for you. When you surrender your life to Him there, everything God has for you comes flooding into your heart.
If you're tired of the hole in your heart, if you're tired of climbing mountains to nowhere, let today be your Jesus-day. Say, "Jesus, I'm yours." Check out our website. It's ANewStory.com, because it's there to help you be sure you belong to Him and know how you can.
Look, you've been searching an awful long time. It's time to find what you've been looking for; to find Who you've been looking for. I'll tell you, He's been waiting for you a long time.