I have valued the input and wisdom of Rick warren over the years in my life. This is an excellent post and fits in very well with my message on Sunday morning this week
“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." (Psalm 23:4)
How do we handle the dark valleys of life? These facts about valleys can help.
1. Valleys are inevitable. They are a normal part of life. Don't be surprised by them. Jesus said, "In this world you will have trouble." (John 16:33)
2. Valleys are unpredictable. They’re sudden and unexpected. Jeremiah 4:20 says, "In an instant my tents are destroyed, my shelter in a moment."
3. Valleys are impartial. No one is insulated from pain and sorrow. No one gets to skate through life free of problems. Problems don’t mean you're a bad person. They mean you’re a person. In Matthew 5:45, Jesus said, "He … sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous."
4. Valleys are temporary. A valley is something we go through – a situation that has a season (see Ps. 23:4). 1 Peter 1:6 says, “Now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials.”
Life is tough, but it's only for a while. There is joy ahead if we know the Lord Jesus Christ. There are no dark days in Heaven.
5. Valleys are purposeful. God has a reason for taking us through them. 1 Peter 1:6-7 says, "These [trials] have come so that your faith … may be proved genuine.”
Pain can be productive. God wants to build our faith in the valleys. We love the mountaintops, but we build faith in the valleys. When we come face to face with a dark valley, we get on our knees.
Prayer guidance: Ask God to walk with you and teach you through the inevitable valleys of life.
To think about: Recall dark valleys of the past. Were they temporary? Were they purposeful?