This post was originally written for a friend, but this post is also for you and me because I know that at times, our circumstances can make it really hard to believe. I pray that this will bless us all.
“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff they comfort me me (Psalm 23:4).” But when I walk down my road late at night, I do it at a different speed than during the day. It’s a lot faster and I look over my shoulders a lot more often. Not because I hear footsteps behind me. Not because anyone down my road has been kidnapped. But because I fear the unknown. As I walk through the valley of… I can’t even finish off that sentence. You are my comforter but what if pain is in your plans for me? Who will comfort me then? So many questions go through my mind as I fear the unknown.
I believe in your power and I know that you love me, but as I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, my faith waivers. Christian’s get hurt too. What makes me so special? As I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, why do you feel so far away? Why do I feel as though darkness is strangling me? I don’t just walk through the valley, I stumble and scream. I reach out for your staff but it feels so far away. But this needs to stop! So when I get out of the valley, here is what I’m going to do, I’m going to learn a bit more about the God I serve so that maybe next time, as I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, fear will be a distant memory.
Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.
– Deuteronomy 31:6
The God that I serve will never leave. He will constantly be by my side. Though I may not feel His presence all of the time, He is there. When times are hard, it doesn’t mean that He is not around. When I feel as though I have sinned too much for Him to even forgive me, His grace is sufficient. He will never leave me. There is nothing that I can do that will ever make me abandon Him. He calls me by my name and is constantly looking out for me. He wants me to be strong. Not because I am strong, but because He is strong.
And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
– 2 Corinthians 12:9
The God that I serve does not require me to be His sidekick. He can fight my battles for me. If I tried to fight off every enemy that I met as I walked through the valley I would surely lose. But when I am strong enough to admit my weaknesses. Strong enough to admit that I need God, He will be able to rescue me. If I give Him my problems, He will sort it out. He does not require me to fight alone, but He doesn’t want me to give up. It is through my vulnerability that He is able to show His strength. Weakness is not always a bad thing. Having fears is not always a bad thing. It only becomes bad when we try and become our own strength and when we try and find our own solutions.
These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world .
– John 16:33
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
– John 14: 27
The God I serve sent His only Son down for me. To be a role model to me. He overcame the world. He came to bring me peace. And guess what? He is on my team! How can I fear the valley when I have such amazing People on my side?
I get it now. When I walk through the valley, I fear evil because evil is always shouting at me. But peace. Peace, is so gentle. Peace has told me who He is many times, He is always with me, just waiting for me to acknowledge Him. He doesn’t like being spoken over, He is just waiting for me to tell evil to be quiet so that I can hear what He has to say. It’s a process, but it’s possible.