The mountain in this passage refers to Mount Zion, a symbol of the Heavenly Jerusalem, and the banquet is a promise that awaits us at the end of time. Throughout the Bible, mountains play an important role; Mount Sinai where Moses received the Ten Commandments, the mountain in the region of Moriah where Abraham was willing to sacrifice Isaac, and of course Mount Calvary, where Jesus died on the cross.
Climbing mountains or in my case, hills, is an exciting and sometimes scary feat. Have you ever noticed that it’s easier going up hill than down? As we ascend, our eyes are fixed on what’s ahead. As we descend, we are watching our feet so that we don’t trip or fall.
I usually walk home from work, about a 30 minute journey. There are hills to climb, and I take the easiest route. This winter, I’ve challenged myself to walk up a steep hill, known as Ramsey hill in St. Paul. I find myself stopping halfway to enjoy the view of downtown St. Paul and catch my breath. When I reach the top, I feel a special closeness to God. There is a sense of accomplishment, and the smaller hills that I encounter the rest of the way home seem insignificant.
Everyday, in all of life, we encounter mountains. Mountains can be overwhelming. But bit by bit, they can be conquered. Sometimes, we make mountains out of molehills. When we stop halfway, we can focus on our accomplishment about how far we’ve come. We can reflect on where we are going. We may need to change paths to go around big boulders or forge straight ahead.
Take time today to reflect on your journey. Are you going uphill or down? Do you need to adjust the route or perhaps, rest a little longer?
When we reach the top of the heavenly mountain, we will have a feeling of exhilaration and a sense of accomplishment, and of course, a feast with rich food and choice wines!
Wife, mother of 7, and grandmother of 4+. Pharmacist at Children’s Hospital in St. Paul. Current President of the St. Paul and Minneapolis Archdiocesan Council of Catholic Women (ACCW).