Have you ever wondered about the high places in the bible? I was reading through the Old Testament 1 Kings and 2 Kings and it kept mentioning the high places. The high places were sites or shrines where idolatry was engaged in. The bad kings would put them up and the good kings would take them down. But with the exception of just a couple of kings, Hezekiah and Josiah, even the good kings would leave some or all the high places and the word says, “they did good in the eyes of the Lord” or “their heart was perfect with the Lord all their days” even though some or all of the high places remained throughout their reign. I had a hard time understanding this. Why did the Lord consider them good when they allowed the high places of idol worship to remain? How could their hearts be considered perfect before the Lord if these high places were still there? I was pondering this in my heart for a few days or weeks and then one day in my quiet time with the Lord he spoke to me and this is what he said:
You have wondered about the high places. The high places that the righteous kings did not tear down. What where they? Why did they leave them? Why did God bless them anyway? Were they not important? Did they not matter?
The high places in my children’s lives are the things that keep them from drawing closer to me. They are the things that they place before me. But notice that I said, ‘my children’. The righteous ones who are called by my name. Whose names are written down in the Lamb’s Book of Life. They are my children. And although they have these high places in their lives, I will bless them because they love me. I would like for them to destroy these high places, and many of them will, given time, but these places are places of past history or tradition in their lives. Not willful sin, but things taught and lived through tradition of man. If I were to wait for all these high places to be torn down before receiving my children, heaven would be nearly empty. These high places will be torn down only through daily dedicated study of my Word and proper teaching. The problem is that many do not study and many who teach have the same high places as those who are being taught.
So what are the high places? Each individual has different high places in their lives. They must examine their hearts and pray for discernment to recognize these high places in their lives. What traditions of man and not God are you caught up in? Think of the holidays and you will begin to understand. On a daily basis what do you do with most of your time? Look in these places to begin to identify the high places. Now think about your thoughts. The ones that are not of me. How is the enemy able to continually bring these thoughts before you? Even though you may dismiss the thoughts, do any of them stem from the high places that may still be in your life? Places left ignored but not torn down are still there, they are still high places in your life.
As my children grow in me and allow me to work in their lives, I will show them these high places and together we will tear them down. But this requires cooperation and willingness on my child’s part. A person can be saved for years and still smoke. Yet they are still my child. But the smoking is a high place in their lives. Something they have done for years, maybe even as a child. In their heart they may know it is not right but they are unwilling to admit it is wrong. They are unwilling to give it up even for me. They will rationalize in their minds and before others why it is ok. Yet, they are still my child. However, the closer they are willing to draw to me, the more they are willing to give and submit to me, the more I will be able to show them the truth and they will tear down these high places. One by one.
If you want to be made aware of the high places in your life, ask me. I will show you. Not all at once, but one by one. And together we will tear these high places down.
But understand that this will not make me love you more. For my love for you is complete. But you my child, will learn to love and trust me more through this process. Your love for me will grow and your trust in me will deepen. Our relationship will be even more intimate than it is today because the high places in your life that stand between you and me will be torn down. And as those places are torn down one by one, my child, you will trample over these places as you walk closer and closer to me.
Examine your heart. Are you willing and desiring to draw closer? You my daughter have been here before. You know when. These were not easy times but they were beautiful times and precious to me. You know what it takes. Teach others. But know that these high places are not torn down at once. And keeping them down is a lifelong process. There is always work to be done. This should not discourage you but encourage you because with the tearing down of each high place you draw closer to me. This means that no matter how close you are to me today, you can still draw closer. Our relationship is never at a standstill. We will continually draw closer the more you seek me and my righteousness in your life and the more you desire to place me first.
I know, my daughter, that you are not satisfied. I know you want more. So let us continue on this adventure. Let us tear down more high places. Let us draw closer together. I love you. I love you. I love you. Come closer. Don’t stop drawing nearer. Never be satisfied with where you are at. Continue to draw nearer to me. I am waiting.
After the Lord gave me this word I was bothered by the “life long process of tearing down the high places”. Lifelong? Why? So this was in my heart and within about two weeks the Lord spoke to me again and this is what He said:
Why does the lifelong process of tearing down these high places disturb you? Did you notice that whenever a king did come along who would tear down these high places that right after he died another king would come along and rebuild them, destroying years of work in my people’s lives? This is why it is a lifelong process. Keeping these idols down takes living a life of holiness before me in spite of what others may say, or think, or do. My children must be careful as to what or who they allow in their lives because the enemy wants these high places to remain in the lives of my children. And some things that may seem innocent and harmless to them are really traps set by the enemy to ensnare them and to lead them to set up these high places in their lives once again, piece by piece, so they won’t even notice that they have been rebuilt until it is standing before them completed once again. It is a lifelong process to tear down and keep down these high places because daily my people must seek me, daily they must pray and daily use discernment, yet most do not. But if you are diligent in your life with me and if you remain close to me and daily walk with me, these high places can remain torn down. The lifelong process is in your daily walk with me. The ups and downs in life, the roller-coaster rides of my children’s lives are because their walk is not steady, it is not continual.
Daily seek me and the path will be smooth and even, even in the hard times. And the idols that have been torn down will remain down. But the key word here, which most people miss, is “daily”. Seek me daily, pray continually. Be firmly established in my word. Continue to grow in your faith, listen daily for my voice, and walk in love always. I love you, my child.