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When the Mountain-Moving God Doesn't Move Mountains

Updated: Sep 7, 2021

Pastor Dan Jongsma

The Bible reveals God as not only a mountain-making God, but also a mountain-moving God. At creation, He spoke, and the mountains came into being. He speaks again and they are thrown into the heart of the sea. (Mark 11:23) But what do we do when the mountains in front of us don’t move? When we strongly believe in the power of God and pray diligently, yet the mountain remains as imposing barrier before us?

In times like that, there are three things we shouldn’t do.

First, we shouldn’t naively believe that faith in God gives us a “free pass” when it comes to physical, emotional, or relational problems. In fact, Jesus told us the opposite in John 16:33, “In this world, you will have trouble.”

Second, we shouldn’t doubt God’s power to move mountains. The problem before us isn’t greater than God. After all, He is sovereign, almighty, and omnipotent. Mountainous problems melt away before His breath, if He so desires it to happen. Third, we shouldn’t doubt God’s goodness. If the mountain isn’t moving, it is not because God is not good or doesn’t care. His loving concern for His children knows no bounds. It is limitless and inexhaustible.

So what is the mountain you want moved? A health concern, a family matter, a job situation, a directional issue.

What do we do when that mountain doesn’t move?

I would suggest that we sit back, relax, and trust that He is not moving this barrier for a good reason. Either the time is not right, or He is doing a greater work in us by allowing it to stand for now. We need to remind ourselves that, as the Good Shepherd, He will leave the 99 in an all-out effort to rescue the lost, distressed sheep. He will even sacrifice His own Son to save us. So we can take refuge in the fact the He knows and desires what is best for us.

It really boils down to the issue of trust. Do we trust God, even when His ways make no sense to us? One of my favorite verses in all the Bible is Proverbs 3:5-6,

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”

Someone gave my wife and I a decorative plague as a wedding gift with these words from Proverbs 3 printed on it. We had that plague hanging on our wall for decades. It served as a foundational principle for our home. God never promised us an easy road to travel; but He did promise that He would be our faithful traveling companion and that He would bring us safely home. He can be trusted with the little stuff, as well as the big stuff of life.

When the mountain doesn’t move, it tells me that what I envisioned for myself is different than what God envisioned.

It reminds me that His plans are higher and greater than mine. I may not understand His ways, but I can always trust His heart. Let me close this devotional with the words of a Lauren Daigle song, “Trust in You.” It paints a picture of what it is like to really walk by faith even when the mountain-moving God doesn’t move mountains. Let it minister to your soul.

When You don’t move the mountains

I’m needing You to move

When You don’t part the waters

I wish I could walk through

When You don’t give the answers

As I cry out to You

I will trust, I will trust, I will trust in You

Truth is, You know what tomorrow brings

There’s not a day ahead You have not seen

So let all things be my life and breath

I want what You want Lord and nothing less

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