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Mountaintop and Valley-low Obedience

The ninth chapter of Mark was particularly rich for me as I read it this morning (Nov.1st). The Chapter starts with Jesus, Peter, James, and John ascending a mountain to be transfigured (Jesus) and transformed (the disciples). The King of kings was seen for who He is, in royal robes of light, affirmed by both the prophetic (Elijah) and the law (Moses). The disciples were overwhelmed by the Glory around them and the voice of Father Himself affirming His Son.

Christians NEED Mountaintop experiences of the glorious revelation that Jesus is God Himself, clothed in wonder and splendor, the fulfillment of all the prophets, the completion of all the law, and the One who brings the Kingdom to earth—and empowers us to represent the King on earth with Heavenly authority…!

A daily time on the Mountain is a great way to deal well with the valleys before us!

Peter’s religious response aside (“come on guys, we need to do something and look good as a result”), it is obvious that Peter, James, and John were impacted and transformed powerfully by their mountaintop experience. We are, too.

They wanted to know about Elijah’s coming first. Jesus explained that the Prophetic Voice of preparation WILL come before His return and DID come through John the Baptist at His first advent. {In fact, I believe “Elijah” is speaking to us in this day…!)

Once off the mountain, they ran into contrary religious leaders, a crowd demanding attention, a man of little faith with a son inhabited by a big demon, and disciples who hadn’t spent enough time in the intimacies of prayer to cast it out…

Jesus rebuked small faith and smaller prayer lives, rebuked the demon, and rescued the boy—and his father…and his under-praying disciples. He went on to teach the 12 privately about His impending death—which led them to infighting over who was the greatest…! (How many families still walk through this…?!)

Jesus told them that greatness looks like serving, not self-exaltation…


  • Mountaintop experiences, when Heavenly realities invade earth—are normal and needed times for believers. In the revealed glory of Jesus, we are transformed!

  • Coming off the mountain, expect strange and unexpected attacks. Most of our lives are lived down in the valley, and it is often a strange place—so very different from the mountaintop we were created for. Yet, it is our “home” for now, and we need to excel in Christ in it.

  • A LIFE of prayer (mountaintop prayer) prepares us for all the flack and faithlessness and demonic attacks of this fallen world. Without it, we are overwhelmed.

  • Success in the valley often brings out the same religious nonsense Peter verbalized on the mountain—one that exalts self and causes conflict with others. SERVING, not gloating, is the heavenly antidote to flowing in the Glory of God.

  • SERVING excludes self-glorification and adulation, and NEVER draws attention to self. It is the perfect counterbalance to both mountaintop highs and valley embarrassments—reminding us that as servants of Christ, we are still family, even if our prayer lives are lame and our mountaintop experiences lamer. Serving, in fact, leads us back to the mountain and calls us back to secret prayer lives….

  • Serving others in the valley and saturating in the Presence on the mountain are the normal rhythms to a healthy Christian life…!

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