Sometimes the path through the darkest valley is the only way to get to the green pastures and quiet waters that He has waiting on the other side.
Have you ever noticed that cold water tastes so much better when you are hot and fatigued from hard work?
Green grass feels so much softer and more lush after experiencing a drought that has taken the life out of your lawn that left it brown and brittle.
This morning, I was texting with a client who is getting her house ready to go on the market. I asked her how she was doing with the frustrating process of construction going on.
Here was her response:
“This part hasn’t been so fun.”
Construction never is. Because constructing something beautiful often means de-constructing, of enduring a mess, an inconvenience.
A loss of something that WAS to gain something that is YET TO BE.
But she is trusting the process. Believing that the men who are in the middle of that mess have a plan and the right tools to get the job done.
She has faith in the outcome and in their ability to make it happen.
That doesn’t mean it hasn’t been tough. It just means she has the right perspective.
I told her to hang in there, that we were almost to the fun part of watching her home spring to new life.
Here’s what she said:
“Really :-)…But it has felt good to get through it as well.”
She values the experience of the construction that she is still living in because it has given her new perspective. She feels stronger for having gone through it.
She learned not to just wish it away, but to glean what she could from the experience with her eyes on the final product and her trust in those that would take her there.
She is going to appreciate her home in ways she has never experienced, because of the changes that occurred during this difficult process.
Dark valleys do for our souls what construction is doing for this homeowner.
They prepare our weary hearts to truly experience the delectable blessings that await us when we get there.
They set us up for authentic gratitude and a better perspective.
We take less for granted, appreciate things more.
We recognize the gift of life. Of God’s presence and faithfulness.
Like never before, we truly see God’s character for what it is.
His faithfulness has been tried and proven true.
Psalm 23 –
“(Because) the Lord is my Shepherd, I shall lack nothing.
He makes me lie down in green pastures,
He leads me beside quiet waters,
He restores (brings back) my soul.
He guides me in paths of righteousness, for His name’s sake.
(Therefore), even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death (darkest valley),
I will fear no evil, for You are with me.
v. 4b – YOUR ROD AND YOUR STAFF, THEY COMFORT ME.
All He asks us to do through this valley is to walk next to Him as He navigates the way. To keep our eyes on Him when we are confused and frightened.
Our Shepherd, just like the construction workers in my client’s home, has the tools to get us through the valley and on to green pastures and quiet waters.
His “rod” of protection fights away the Enemy who threatens to attack us in this vulnerable place.
He carries His “staff” that serves as both a walking stick, symbolizing His presence and commitment to us on the journey, and a means of drawing us back to His side if we get distracted and veer off the path in that dark valley.
We need to trust His plan, His method of “reconstruction” in our lives that includes His protection and direction.
(Coincidence that our Shepherd was also a Carpenter?)
Next week I will get to go and see my client’s home in all its new and improved glory. It will be all prepped and ready to go from beautiful house to warm and inviting home.
Just like our hearts, emerging from the valley.
Green pastures and quiet waters are just around the bend….