Climber lost on Mt. Hood! In NW Oregon, that makes major news. There’s the drama of a human interest story—man against the elements. It captures everyone’s attention, especially the family and those of us who know that climber. We wait for word from the search teams and pray for the weather to clear.
Dr. Kinley Adams was prepared for his solo assault on Mt. Hood. He’d been climbing Hood every two weeks or so, preparing for an expedition to Nepal. He knew the risks and potential for danger. It’s been four days and cold nights on that 11,240’ high mountain but search teams have not been able to locate him. Though Kinley had a reputation for caution and not taking risks, something happened. Now, his fate is in God’s hands. We pray for God’s angels to minister to him in whatever condition he’s in at this very moment. White-outs shut down rescue operations early afternoon today, so he faces another night on a cold mountain.
Another man comes to mind who advanced almost alone against a formidable opponent. Jonathan, son of King Saul and best friend of David, the future king of Israel, wanted to strike a blow against the Philistine oppressors. I Samuel 14 gives us this record:
1 One day Jonathan son of Saul said to his young armor-bearer, “Come, let’s go over to the Philistine outpost on the other side.” … 3 No one was aware that Jonathan had left … 6 He said, “Perhaps the Lord will act in our behalf. Nothing can hinder the Lord from saving, whether by many or by few.”
7 “Do all that you have in mind,” his armor-bearer said. “Go ahead; I am with you heart and soul …”
13 Jonathan climbed up … with his armor-bearer right behind him … 14 In that first attack Jonathan and his armor-bearer killed some twenty men in an area of about half an acre.
15 Then panic struck the whole army … It was a panic sent by God …
The Lord saved Israel that day—through the actions of Jonathan. Regardless of our circumstances, we cannot defeat our adversaries alone. As with Jonathan and the Israelites, as with my dentist, Dr. Adams, victory must come from the Lord.
We have our ideas of what victory should look like—Kinley Adams safely off that mountain. But the shape of success is even bigger: already, we hear of prayer vigils and the coming together of many people spread across the Northwest, as well as a multitude directing their thoughts toward God and to one another—simply because of what’s happened to Kinley.
What is your expectation of what God will do in your present crisis? Are you expecting God to provide victory in the life of your child, your spouse, the medical prognosis of you or your loved one, or those who oppress and malign you?
Our perceptions matter. God will define even that.