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The way up is steep. Challenging. Gritty. Unpredictable. But man, is it illuminating. My mountain looks a little different than most, but I think it’s safe to say that each of us ventures up a “mountain” at some point. What does your climb look like?

“This mountain didn’t seem so daunting at the beginning of this climb,” I silently think to myself. It was early still, the night was fading and the new day was emerging. This early morning expedition, fueled by some strong coffee and determination became more than just a “hike.” I found it morphing into this feat of prayer and self reflection almost. I made sure to take careful steps, focusing on my breathing. My heart pounded as I begun to make the strenuous climb to the top. “How long would it take me?” The leafy ground cover is still damp from the gentle rain the night before. The forest is mostly quiet, tranquil. I was far away from people, cars, and miles from the busy noise one would hear in the city. All that was really audible, was the forest life waking up to a new day. I stopped mid stride to take it in. I closed my eyes for a moment, and attuned my ears to the wildlife that surrounded me. Squirrels scampering about, and a few songbirds singing their cheerful “good morning” carols. An owl in the distance. Still frozen in place, I open my eyes and I look around at the exquisite woodland wonder that I’m currently fixed in. The fog surrounded me, but it wasn’t eerie or off-putting. It felt serene, and safe. “This is…. majestic.I wondered if everyone who climbed this mountain felt this enraptured in it’s peaceful solitude. I knew dawn was approaching, and the view from the top was what I was wanting. I glanced at the way before me. It was changing. One foot in front of the other, and I trekked on. The pitch of the narrow trail grew steeper as I scaled my way up. I could feel the sweat nestle in my brow as I looked up to the top. The sun was just beginning to kiss the summit, and illuminated the path before me. The cool mountain air filled my lungs with refreshment, and at the same time, raised little chill bumps all over my arms. I felt calm, euphoric even, as the endorphins pulsed through my body. I’m about half way to the top, and my legs are absolutely burning.. “but that glorious sunrise that I’ll see will be worth it,” I tell myself. On the trail ahead I see various “rock gardens” decorating the side of this bluff. The way they lined the sides and middle of my path, I tried to imagine my now unsteady, and aching feet scaling the jagged boulders. “Am I balanced enough for this?”


It’s easier said than done. There’s a lot of self doubt, and even self-roasting that takes place. Am I right? Sometimes that conquering voice is muffled, or completely drowned out by the blood curdling screams of cowardice. That overly critical inner voice can build a foundation of fear and failure if we aren’t careful to guard our thoughts. As we go through this life journey, we inevitably face bigger, and more frightening opponents. And I don’t mean literally.. (unless you’re an MMA Fighter. Then yes, you’ll definitely spar with bigger, “badder” dudes on a regular basis.) But if you’re an “average-joe” like most of the population, then it’s safe to say that your adversaries will mirror career, relationship, or health battles. The competitors that challenge each of us will undoubtedly be unique. Tailored perfectly to induce molded character. Edification to sculpt the warrior.

It’s pretty safe to make the assessment that people handle challenges one of two ways. They either pick up the gloves and deliver repeated blows to the adversary; or, they throw up the white surrender flag and wallow in the muck and mire. There doesn’t ever seem to be a gray area in this. You either cry, or you conquer – and no one but you can decide that. Throughout life, I think we have many small battles that prepare us for a couple major wars that we’ll 100% be on the frontlines for. Calling the shots though, isn’t something we should strive for. It should be the goal to relinquish battle plans to the The Lord – The General with endless Reinforcements. It’s the burying of the temptation to control, yielding open hands and a willing heart to the Lord. Bottom line? He has foresight that simply isn’t attainable for feeble mankind. It’s an endeavor that encompasses trust and tenacity all wrapped up in one.


I was shaking, weak from the ascent. This was shaping up to be the climb of a lifetime. I was half way to the top, and from my point of view – it was only growing to become more challenging of a climb than what I’d signed up for.

Up ahead I see the trail narrowing, and becoming steeper. Despite the intimidating terrain, I was still able to take the beauty of this journey captive. Intoxicated by all of it’s splendor. I was invigorated, determined“I feel positively alive.” I couldn’t believe how incredibly lost, yet “found” that I felt in this moment. This was hard. Harder than any climb I’d been in the throes of, but I couldn’t give up. “I have to make it to the top,” convincing myself to stay the course. This winter was much like all the others before, it’s always the erasing of greenery in the Summer and the shedding of bright colors from the Fall. It inevitably yields empty and grey woods. It’s barren, but scenic. Gripping beauty, even in this season where the forest rebuilds. “It’s like us, we rebuild. Every season of life.” I thought to myself. I pondered this revelation whilst trudging through this mountainous adventure. I feel as though this winter was a little different. It was warmer than some of the others that I can remember. Cool air – not cold. Damp and loamy ground, instead of hard terrain with frosty leaves and perfectly iced limbs. Each year, the North Georgia mountains seem to deliver unique seasons. Days with wavering temperature and fluctuating rain patterns. “Are we overly critical of the seasons we go through? Do we have patience with the changing of the pace?” This journey up this demanding slope had me contemplating life in all the ways. I was now questioning whether or not I’ve been too quick to jump, evade, or downright skate over milestones that could have given me insight, or even small blessings.


I’m only a few paces away from my destination, and I can see the sun shining through the clearing of trees from where I am. “I made it.” Feeling positively on top of the world, above every heavy and burdensome thing, I stood in awe of the masterpiece I now was seemingly in the center of. The sun had already begun pouring it’s gentle rays of light over the valleys. Carefully painting the ridges that seemed to go on for miles. It was breathtaking.. and I found myself weightless standing on top of this mountain, that I almost didn’t climb. I couldn’t help but think to myself: “I’m now reveling in the blessing of a once in a lifetime view that I otherwise would have missed, had I not accepted the climb.”


I didn’t actually scale a mountain recently, as you guys probably guessed. But I do have a friend who did, and she let me steal a couple gorgeous pictures she took herself.

Whether we are literally scaling a mountain, or whether we are scaling a mental and emotional mountain, it bears worth asking the question: Are we stopping often to take in the blessings and little joys around us? Are we facing our challenges with boldness and determination? Or are we loathing every second, every footstep, and every wavering climate?

Faith and perseverance should become our mantra, if it’s not already.

Whatever the mountain, whatever the season, whatever the battle – let us pick up the sword, the shield, (and maybe some killer hiking boots,) and MOVE it. Move it with prayer and petition, move it with tenacity and courage.

We serve One Mighty King, and nothing is impossible for Him – which means nothing is impossible for us!

I implore you to not just pray that mountain be moved, but scale it. Learn every twist, turn, jagged edge, and slippery slope it has to offer, then pray some more – and keep climbing. There may be some blood, sweat and tears involved – but I guarantee there’ll be double the blessings. Whatever you do, don’t give up. Whether it’s a gene mutation, a strained relationship, the effort to graduate countless years of law school, or whatever existential crisis – That mountain can be moved, 100%. But don’t underestimate the climb. Sometimes what’s moved, is the fear, the doubt and the defeat. Never stop looking up, or reaching for the Hand that holds you.

2 comments on “Faith Can Move A Mutation

  1. Pam Lecher says:

    Leslie I have no words for what I just finished reading. The triumphant beauty of your words that express your limitless faith in the power of God.
    May God bless you and ease your pain. With Love

    Liked by 1 person

    1. 💛🤟 Thank you, Pam. Miss you! Sending love back ❤️


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