..."rest snugly in My everlasting arms. I do not despise your weakness, My child. Actually, it draws Me closer to you, because weakness stirs up My compassion-My yearning to help. Accept yourself in your weariness, knowing that I understand how difficult your journey has been. Do not compare yourself with others who seem to skip along life-path with ease." …"I have gifted you with fragility providing opportunities for your spirit to blossom in My Presence.” -Sarah Young, Jesus Calling It’s precious to God for you and me to need Him.
I’m not the kind of “valley girl” you may be thinking of, although I have lived in Cali, so please stay with me here! God keeps me close because I am so quick to try the self-sufficient game. So, let me ask you … can you remember a time when your situation felt so grim that you truly felt like there was no way God could be near? Is that time now? Maybe you’ve had one trial after another occur, almost to the point of embarrassment? I get it…thus the necessity for the opening quote! We are going to be okay though! I believe this because of these truths which stem from these words in Isaiah 54.10, “Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed, says the Lord, who has compassion on you.”
When the “mountains are shaken” in our lives, and you and I know we are not living on a “mountaintop”, our hearts can feel like they’re in “the valley.” A low place. Let me tell you something about the valley. Being in the valley doesn’t mean you are disobeying God and therefore you don’t get to be with those on high. Valley’s have creeks to walk in until we get stronger; streams to drink from that help us regain our health; and trees to practice climbing through to see the truth. Valleys are God-made practice grounds for us to grow until He places us on the mountaintop to glory in His victory.
I have found myself to be primarily a “valley girl.” It’s not on purpose, but I have noticed that even though mountains, when climbed to the top, are amazing and beautiful, the journey through the valley is where the lessons are. There weakness is seen as a good thing by God, the path you and I have been on is treated carefully and validated as being flat out hard, and God in His utter compassion draws near. When I am on the mountain top and my mind isn’t hurting with depression, and my bites of food aren’t as difficult, strangely enough, I miss the valley. In my weakness, He is made strong, and it’s all about Him. I. Like. That.
If you and I are never in the depth of the valley to learn and grow closer to our Father, the mountain and all of its views will not be desired. God is in both places.
Are you in the valley? Please don’t be embarrassed. There is no shame in being teachable. When I compare my journey to another’s path, I’m doubting that God has my very best interest at heart. God is the lifter of our head…in our fragile state He is teaching us to long for our spirit to blossom “in His presence.” This…He wants to share with us! God is not a bully who pushes us further down into the ground. And there is no shame, my friend, in being a “valley girl” when God is working His way in my life, and yours!
Father God, thank you for using the valley to teach us obedience and make us strong for the continued journey to come. You know what each of us need. Thank you that anyplace we are with you is worth the stay until you move us to the next place. Thank you that we do not have any reason to be embarrassed about what others may think about where you have us when we are in Your care. Please help us to accept your help and your love and your compassion as the gift You made it to be. In Jesus’ name…Amen.