Scripture: 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, (Ps. 23:4 KJV).
“The Valley of the Shadow of Death” was an actual place. It was a dreadful intimidating place through which one must travel on the road to Jerusalem from Jericho. It was a place favored by thieves and murderers who took advantage of travelers that braved a road adjacent to deadly terrain. A valley is a low place between two high places. In order to have a valley there must be mountains on either side. Mountains on the left of us and on the right of us. Without the mountains there are no valleys.
The same is true in our spiritual life. To reach the place where God is leading us we must sometimes traverse the valley of the shadow of death. Though we walk through the valley of the shadow of death, there are no shadows because God’s light is shining down on us.
Spiritual mountain tops are wonderful spots to rest awhile. At such times, we feel close to God and sure of His love. But, we get to those high places by toiling through the valley. While in the valley we discover His character, the truth of His promises, and our own weakness. There are aspects of the Lord that we see only as we journey through the valley of the shadow.
God wants His children to rely entirely upon Him. He draws us through valleys in order to remove every habit, thought patterns, or external crutches that we use instead of trusting Him. In the low places we discover whether our faith, courage, and wisdom are self created or from the Lord. Walking in valleys is an inevitable part of life, but believers aren’t left comfortless. As the Shepherd, His rod protects us and his staff leads and guides us. Therefore, we need not fear because God is with us.
God promised assurance of healing and safety in times of troubles and hardships. He is a very present help in the time of trouble. He’s always available when we need Him. Whether were in dark dry places, or in valleys, God is faithful and is sure to answer whenever we call on Him!
The LORD is high above all nations, and his glory above the heavens. Who is like unto the LORD our God, who dwelleth on high, Who humbleth himself to behold the things that are in heaven, and in the earth! Psalm 113:4-6 (KJV)
Keep God first!
(Source: Nelson’s Newly Illustrated Bible Dictionary)