A Call To The Remnant

Scottish Warriors for Christ- http://www.facebook.com/acalltotheremnant

The long narrow path home.

Posted by appolus on April 9, 2021

We hear a lot about the glory of God and encountering God. I have written much about it over the years and it has radically transformed me. His manifest presence is overwhelmingly glorious and jarring, and powerfully transformative. No one can encounter God in such a manner and not be fundamentally changed. If you are not changed, you did not encounter God. Every saint must encounter God and His manifest presence.

Yet, in the span of this life and by the way we measure our lives, these encounters make up a very small part of our time on the narrow walk home. They are vital, but they are like landmarks along the way. The vast majority of our time as saints is spent in the wilderness, the deserts, the high mountain plains. We journey through trials and tribulations. We spend seasons in silence. We have many times when we cry out to God. We pass through doubts and fears and deep flooded valleys.

I watched a documentary once about the Pacific Crest trail. It runs for 2640 miles from Mexico to Canada through California, Oregon and Washington State. One of the hardest and most arduous parts of the trail is right at the beginning where hundreds of miles of desert have to be traversed. You will be hungry, thirsty and very cold at night and then suffer the heat of a blazing desert sun through the day.

When you eventually come out of that terrain, you will hit the mountains. The hikers stated that if they had not been conditioned by the harsh desert hike, they would never have had the stamina to make it up and over the mountain passes. Can you see how that works brothers and sisters? Without the great spiritual trials of our lives we would not be conditioned to make it up into the mountains and over them.

In a show called “Running with Bear Grylls,” the host takes celebrities on two day hikes through very difficult situations. On one of the shows they were in Norway, a very cold and rainy country, not unlike my home country of Scotland. He wanted to show his guest an exercise they do in special ops training. He made him create a burning ember on some bark from a tree. He then had to enter a freezing lake up to his neck and tread water for several minutes with this burning ember held aloft.

Now this is a test of endurance. The fight is against the body which is beginning to shut down. The burning embers will be his salvation when he gets out of the freezing water. When he gets out, he needs to have the wherewithal to take that burning ember and make a fire. After he makes the fire he has to get his compass out and set his bearings so that he knows which way to go when he is warmed back to life.

All of this is to test the ability to continue to think when all around you is in chaos, when your mind and body are in full rebellion against the circumstances that it finds itself in. Saints, we are regularly tested like this. I put it to you that the ember that is held aloft is the burning Holy Spirit and the Word of God. No matter what, it has to be held aloft. The compass is the same. No matter what the circumstances are we have to be able to set our compasses and know which way to go, the compass is the Word of God and the Holy Spirit.

And then, all of a sudden, we encounter the Living God again. It can be on the mountain top, but it is just as likely to be in the depths of the valley. The Mountain will manifest itself in the valley. Suddenly the Sun rises in the depths of the darkness and warms our cold hearts. Suddenly I know He is there. Suddenly I feel strength coming back into tired and worn out limbs. My waiting has not been in vain. Like a long lost lover, He returns. The one for whom my heart ached for is there.

And for some glorious moments I am revived in every part of who I am. The journey which I thought I could not complete suddenly becomes possible again, all things are possible when my Lord visits me. And from that place I take the lingering embers of His presence and they are life to me. The Word of God is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path, the long narrow path home. And I keep going, knowing that there will come again this oasis of His glory. Again and again, until I am home. Keep going saints. I love my fellow sojourners.

8 Responses to “The long narrow path home.”

  1. Scott Price said

    Dear brother. I get your point but often God’s presence is most manifest in the storm when all about is chaos rather than the stillness. I know you know that.


    • appolus said

      Scott, here is my second last paragraph of the piece And then, all of a sudden, we encounter the Living God again. It can be on the mountain top, but it is just as likely to be in the depths of the valley.” Thank you for reiterating that point, it’s been the bulk of everything I have written over the years and has taken up most of my poetry………bro Frank

  2. Martin said

    Thank you. Your writings are ministering to me.

  3. Rebecca said

    You are right there are mostly deep valleys … one after another. I am learning to remind myself of His great works in my life. The restoration … the ways in which He holds me close when I think I can not take one more step. Jesus never lets go. The silence is sometimes deafening but then through His Word or that still small voice I am once more revived to go on another day. I am learning that He gives just enough for the days battle … and a battle it can be. I will print this post off for my Bible … thank you

  4. What a beautiful analogy with the Pacific Trail brother! Thank you for this blessing today.

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