Earlier tonight I found myself watching the super bowl. If I am completely honest I really don't care for pro-football. This past season I didn't watch a single game, and even in hearing the scores after, all I cared about was if the Broncos lost. But that's another story all together. But during the game an add came on. And is that not the reason half the people watch the Super Bowl? It was an add aimed as selling trucks. The audio was from the last sermon that Dr. King Jr ever preached, and they wanted to use it to sell damn trucks. (Please excuse the word damn, but I wrote another word that rhymed with ducking, and felt as though this word might be better since I'm putting it out for the whole world to read.)
I didn't even finish watching the game at that party, but that again is another story. When I got home I pulled up the sermon by Dr King. While the add played I tried to listen but those around me seemed more interested in getting the newest dip on the table. The words of someone long gone seemed to hold no weight. The words of a martyr. And yet the dip on the table was of more weighty. As I got home I admit my mind was rambling. Even as it is now.
But the word of the sermon, 'I've been to the Mountain.' They are haunting me as much as any ghost. The sermon ends with Dr King bellowing out;
"I don't know what will happen now. We're got some difficult days ahead. But it really doesn't matter for me now. Because I've been to the Mountain top. I don't mind. Like anybody, I would like to live a long life, longevity has it's place. But I'm not concerned about that now. I just wanna do God's will. And He's allowed me to go up to the Mountain. And I've looked over, and I've seen the promised land. I may not get there with ya. But I want you to know tonight, that we as a people will get to the promised land. So I'm happy tonight, I'm not worried about anything, I'm not fearing any man. Mine eyes have seen the glory of coming of the Lord."
Dr King knew where he was leading people to. And that was something that gave him courage. But something else had happened altogether. To use his own words, he had been to the mountaintop.
In Scripture so often the mountaintop is used to speak of a meeting place with God. It was for Abraham, for Moses, for the disciples at the transfiguration. Dr King was no longer a man held by fear for he had been there. He had been to the top.
When I was 13 I climbed my first mountain. I was chubby and halfway up I wanted to quit. Through tears, although my dad will leave that part off because he wants to defend his son, I begged to go down. I was weak and tired. I saw no way that I could get to the top. I was tired and worn out. But at that point my father pointed out that it would be just as long to the top as it would be to get back down. He spoke words of strength. I would be tired tomorrow, that he promised. But halfway up a mountain, it would be just as long getting down as getting up. So we climbed. And we got to the top. I was a 13 year old boy from Opelika, Alabama and had climbed a mountain.
But when we got there there were far more people than would have fit on the trail. There was a road to the top. Tourists came to the top and got winded only walking to the store that sold patches and protein bars. But at the the top my father again spoke wisdom, those people will long forget the trip. It would be a check off a list, or a magnet on an rv. But they would not remember it. This mountain, raised by God to show men that they are small, would hold no memory. And all these years later I hear the voice of Dr King and his mountain. I think of my first.
I have driven cross county a few times and know the names of no mountain I passed, and hold no memory of them. But that mountain, at 13, it has been branded on my soul. For that mountain cost me something, as many mountains after have done. And it is only those mountain which cost us something, the mountains which take a toll that come to remembrance.
Dr King spoke of a mountain which was older than the Appalachians and taller than the Himalayans. He had climbed the mountain of God. A mountain which is climbed by prayer and finds its summit though tears. I do not dare to say that I have been to the summit, but I have seen it. I have seen it after prayers so long that I became hoarse. I have seen the clouds of this world hold back the peak, and found that Son to pull them away.
So thank you Ram. I have no intention to buy a new truck, but after listening to the sermon sampled. I heard the voice of one who has been to the mountaintop that I have strove for. I was at a place of giving up, but I hear the echo of someone from the top. He bellowed down to me, 'I've been to the mountaintop.' I heard the voice of a saint, and he called me further up. I intend to follow, it shall be hard. Be we are halfway up, and it'll be just as hard to go down as it would be to finish at this point. He called out that he had been there, I intend to climb on and bellow out the same.