Prayer on a Hill

The girl’s shadow moved along the hillside, passing through desolate stalks of wheat under an open sky. These past few weeks had crept up on her, draining her of motivation and testing her faith. The everyday demands of life had twisted into a complex knot in her chest. She felt weary, exhausted from the weight of expectations. Recently, she’d been feeling far from God and like she was suffocating in the constant chatter of the modern world. Thus her hike, to get away from the distraction of it all and seek God’s voice. Tendrils of leaves rustled past her, casting a whisper of encouragement over her. However, frustration was evident in the frown that marked her lips and the furrow that marred her brow. There was a groaning within that she couldn’t quite utter, a yearning for peace and freedom.

She turned her eyes to the horizon, watching the sky become streaked with vibrant oranges and yellows. The clouds drifted aimlessly. If only she could traverse through her worries just as easily. If only the racing passage of time and constant swarm of tasks could dissipate into mist as well. The girl stilled her footsteps and settled onto the ground as a prayer began to form in her chest. Distant, familiar lyrics resurfaced:

Jesus, I’m struggling, / Struggling to see, / Doubting your provision, / Still my mind to remember, / Still my soul / Your oceans wave without thinking / Your mountains rise without knowing / Teach me this kind of humility.

Teach me to dance so I can dance with you / And these chains that bound me, break them in glory.

Staring at the hollowed out homes for squirrels and birds, the mountains that stood tall and unwavering, and the daisies swaying in the breeze, a clear message entered her heart: surrender. The girl shakily regained her feet, dusting off her wrinkled skirt. She spread her arms wide, trying to encompass the warm, golden expanse before her and shouted: 

“My heart cries out to you in this lostness and emptiness. Teach my heart to sing these praises. May your love become my anthem and reason for waking up with your melody on my lips.”

After this declaration, the urge to dance overcame her. The God who painted the sky, the one who built the mountains, and the one who crafted the daisies, was the same God who danced with her now. She felt the weight of her burdens lift. Anxieties and the enemy’s lies flittered away, and all that was left was the comfort of being in God’s hands. She began to twirl, the feeling of freedom enlivening as her skirt billowed and her hair flowed behind. She twirled, bare feet carrying her around and around until she was breathless and collapsed onto the earth. There were creases in her dress, but her countenance was smoothed with contentment. The words and noise in her mind fizzled out, leaving her to ponder her Maker’s presence. 

The gold shifted to blue as the sun crept below the horizon, and the earth exhaled.