I remember distinctly the day I was called a flake. My niece smiled kindly and happily as she said, “Mert, you’re a flake.”
I didn’t know whether to feel blessed by a child or to feel insulted, yet she seemed so sweet. I asked her, “What do you mean by flake? That means different things. What kind of flake?”
She paused and thought long and hard for a four year old. Then she said, ever so sweetly, “A snowflake.”
“Why a snowflake?” I asked.
“Because you’re clean!” she exclaimed.
I was blessed indeed and felt so unworthy of her pronouncement.
As I reflect on the unique mission & calling God has given me and what my niece said, I believe that her pronouncement also reveals something about our common faith. My mind drifts to Psalm 133:
See how good and delightful
For brothers to dwell together as one.
Like the precious oil upon the head
Descending on the beard;
The beard of Aaron,–
Which descended unto his robe:
Like the dew of Hermon which descended
upon the mountains of Zion,–
For there YHWH commanded the blessing:
Life for all time.
Mount Hermon is a place where it snows, and where there is also dew that settles on other hills due to the coolness of the heights and the condensation. Each individually unique bit of precipitation on Mount Hermon joins others to prepare the way for the whole land to be blessed with dew.
Likewise, the Lord gets his due throughout the earth when we as God’s people join together in the heights and compact together to settle in the place God appointed at the time he has set. Our common faith works together as each part plays a unique part of intercession and waiting before the Lord.
Wikipedia has a fine photo of Hermon with snow on it. As you can see, the sight is imposing and impacts a large area around.
Ultimately though, we must realize that our source is not the mountain. We must look beyond the mountain to the Lord God Almighty who put the mountain in place, sends the snow, and sends the dew upon the land. Look to Him, and your needs will be supplied and the land will be watered.
In the Gospels, it may have been Mount Hermon where Jesus went up to be transfigured. It would have shown his sovereignty over the place where false gods were regarded as reigning by the pagans. Pagans would have built shrines in the area to honor non-gods. Jesus claimed sovereignty by being transfigured there and being whiter than the snow and giving the disciples an idea of the changes that would take place in their lives as He would accomplish His reign in & through them. Mount Hermon was at the Northern border of the Land of Promise.
In Christianity, Mount Hermon speaks of the edge of our life where transformation & transfiguration takes place. We reach the edges of the promises. We seek the Lord. We follow Him to the ends of the earth on a mission for the Kingdom. To be with Him wherever we are going. And suddenly we find He is more and greater than we would ever expect. Our faith in the Messiah which we share in common with Moses and the Prophets is brilliant, yet not the work of human genius. Humans cannot make a soul as radiant as Jesus.
We would love to memorialize the presence of the Lord. But God does not want to merely form a memory, He wants to send us on a mission to new places with new graces, rooted in a common faith, each bearing a unique, meltable mission.
You see, when you melt the snow of Mount Hermon, it melts into one pool of water. We enter in one way, and leave transformed. Our unique mission converges on the edges of the land. At the edge of the presence of God’s people in the world, we find that there is often the most unity among the saints. We work together when we see not our distinctiveness, but how our little drop of love can be joined in the clouds of glory to exalt the Lord of Glory!
You see, love is the greatest, most enduring thing. The mountains will be leveled. One day, people will no longer ski down Hermon’s slopes. But the steadfast love of the Lord endures forever.