Pondering this picture, and thought I’d use it as a prompt because it came up on my FB feed as a memory of trekking the Himalaya’s to Mt. Everest Base Camp in 2008. Gazing upon it triggered a stir of emotion, a reflective moment per se because the baggage on the backs of the Yaks and the heaviness presented. You see, it profoundly portrays a picturesque visual, a resembling, very symbolic of the trials and baggage we carry in this temporal earthly existence. And yet… the Yaks press on in the midst of their great burden at a pace and perseverance worth noting and watching.
As I trekked from behind watching from afar their trial, the burden of baggage they’d been given, I felt encouraged, refined. I took on their stride to emulate it. And in doing so it made the trek easier. It enabled me to make it to base camp. By watching their example it chiseled my character. It provided a much needed focus, the hope I would make it. In a funny sort of way, the Yak’s trial, their burden of baggage gave them a platform for those watching a renewed sense of hope. In the same way, my takeaway, and glancing at this picture from long ago, it provided another perspective on the meaning of trials. That God uses trials not only to chisel and refine our character into His image, to train us for the future, prepare us for our eternal inheritance but also to reveal Himself to those who are watching.
No matter how difficult the trial, this has been a timely reminder that if I (we) keep my (our) focus directed on Him, that deep abiding joy which is rooted in the hope I (we) have in Jesus Christ, it will shine through because each trial gives a platform to make Christ known to those who are watching, thus bringing praise and glory and honor.
In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. (1 Peter 1:6-7)