Mountains and Mules

“For behold, He who forms mountains and creates the wind and declares to man what are His thoughts...” (Amos 4:13 NASB)

Have you stopped to consider that it may be God who formed the mountain and brought the wind of adversity to divert you from going in the wrong direction? Often the mountains and winds in our lives are necessary to lay bare our thoughts and expose the intentions of our hearts. To be powerfully used of God our motives must be tested. Many times, we command mountains to move that God Himself has dropped in our path. Rest assured, if God made the mountain in your life it won’t be moving anytime soon. I am not speaking of the mountains of disease, poverty, depression, etc. These are demonic attacks and hindrances to be cast into the abyss (Mark 11:23-24). God gives us double grace for these “mountains” (Zechariah 4:7; John 1:16). The roadblocks I speak of are the ones that God purposely places before us to detour us from disappointment, defeat, and even disaster.

There are many Biblical examples to cite regarding “God Obstacles.” God caused confusion to arise on the project at Babel to bring it to a screeching halt. God caused a stubborn mule to divert the prophet Balaam from proceeding to curse Israel. God brought a storm and formed a huge fish to swallow Jonah while running from the call of God on His life. God blasted light and forced a horse to throw Paul to the ground on his way to Damascus (to persecute and even kill believers). All these examples and many more are given to teach us that we must abandon the road of selfish ambition, self-promotion and self-initiated causes.

When we build towers or kingdoms unto ourselves it results in confusion and every evil thing (James 2:16 NASB). In the instance with Balaam, the mule kept veering off the road and no matter how much Balaam beat him the mule would not submit. No matter how much we pound or force it, if it isn’t God’s purpose we will not get where we are going. This is not to say we won’t have challenges on the way to fulfilling God’s vision for our lives. However, so many times God is doing everything to make it obvious that we are out of His will, only to find ourselves climbing out of a ditch because we refused to respond to His promptings.

God sometimes allows difficult people to enter our lives (i.e. Balaam’s mule and Paul’s horse) to force us to lay down our pride and trust Him through the process. God uses stubborn people to process us and oppose our wayward ways. James 4:6 tells us that God actively strives against the proud. In fact, contrary people are often necessary even in a God given vision. Why? A Brother or Sister Sandpaper in our lives will help refine the rough edges of our lives that keep us from being all God wants us to be. Don’t be too quick to dismiss difficult people. Not all difficult people are haters. More than often we need people to challenge us in order for us to ask ourselves the tough and honest questions about what we’re doing and where we are going (Proverbs 13:18; 26:7).

So be honest with yourself and God. Is selfish ambition driving you? Is the difficult person in your life challenging your pride? Is the mountain before you a God given detour? You know the answer... Don't be a stubborn mule about it!