This is for the ones who have been dealt the hand of sorrow-who have had their share of sleepless nights and tear-filled days. I desire to encourage you throughout your process of grief, and to allow you to be washed with the water of His Words while you journey through the pain. I hope you can start to see your trial with new eyes. To see it as an entrusting from the Lord, rather than a punishment from Him. Please don’t misunderstand. I do not believe that God has ‘given’ you this trial or that He put you in the ‘grief corner’ so you could finally learn your lesson. I think most of the evil that we experience in this lifetime stems from our fallen nature as humans, but often we are quick to interpret it as a sign from the cosmos that we have done something wrong. I hope that throughout the course of this devotional, you can start to see the truth that God is with you in the storm. And He wants to walk you through the valley of the shadow to show you time and time again how good He is at turning every bit of wrong done to you around for your good. Redemption is always in His heart, and He will not stop until it is fulfilled in your life. So let these next 21 days be a time of setting your mind upon the words of Your Father, receiving His truth, and letting His love heal the hurt places of your heart. I pray you find the answers you’ve been searching for, the peace that passes understanding, and the love that melts away sorrow.
The Valley of the Shadow
“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.” – Psalm 23:4
“God is not on the other side of any particular door passively waiting; He is on the other side of all the doors, eager to be discovered, and better yet, He is on this side of the door with you right here, right now-for you and not against you.”
– Jonathan Martin, ‘How to Survive a Shipwreck’
If you’re anything like me, it can take some time to figure out where you are after everything you’ve formerly known falls apart. I stayed busy, hustled to make ends meet, so much so that I didn’t realize I was walking through the darkest valley of my life. But I have learned in every step of the valley season, the more I walk, the closer I get to freedom. The closer I am to finding joy. The closer I am to being me again. So even in my denial, my depression, and my anger, the more willing I was to experience every stage of sorrow, the closer I was to experiencing wholeness and healing. So, let yourself off the hook today. If all you want to do is cry- wherever you are, whoever is watching, cry your eyes out. If you are experiencing pain to the point of anger, find yourself a large pillow and scream away. Even if you’re still in a stage of bewilderment, not sure how to decipher what is real and what isn’t-it’s ok. Jesus is near. He will lead you on through this valley of the shadow. He knows the way.