Have you ever gotten your car stuck in the mud? I mean, really stuck. I sure have. And I sometimes get really stuck in life and its valleys.
And if you struggle with anxiety, it’s possible to get stuck in fear and doubt. It’s often a daily fight to stay the course – feed the people, clean the laundry, do the carpool. I hate living in survival mode. It’s draining and frustrating and a giant trigger for anxiety.
Yet, something beautiful happens in these uncertain times. You discover new things about the character of God.
Even in the Valley – He Protects You
You discover that He gives you a new level of steadfastness. You discover that your heart can heal. While it may be scarred, you can share the wisdom you gained from enduring that pain and healing.
I’m being a bit abstract, but some amazing things happened in my recent valley. Some mighty prayers were answered. And He really does work for your good and purpose.
If I could just keep that front and center at all times, I’d be so much better. But I’m a work in progress, not a perfection – yet.
In II Thessalonians 3:3, Paul writes, “3 But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one.”
That protection may be God’s greatest gift outside salvation. It’s amazing to me that so many things coincide in the grace of God.
Prayer Will Sustain You
If you’re in one of those valleys, I urge you to stand fast in those prayers for mercy, wisdom, and hope. They will sustain you.
Six years ago this month, I got some of the happiest news I’d ever received — I was pregnant and the baby was viable after a year of uncertainty and testing. A much-prayed prayer was answered.
It’s hard to believe that much time has passed since that little heartbeat warmed my mama heart back up.
I look at that little promise in awe so many times a day. His mind is beautiful. His ways are quirky. He’s obsessed with being strong. But he doesn’t know what a promise he is. And what a struggle it is some days for me to be his mom.
When I go back in time to the day they told me “there might have been a baby,” and my world completely crumbled, I can look on that day like I do a scar. It hurts to go there, but it’s not as painful.
I believe it’s not as painful because God promised me He would redeem that loss.
That nine months of waiting was the closest I’ve ever been to the Lord. His strength brought me away from the edge of hell. He drew me in and kept me close. He built walls around me to protect me from profound pain.
Great Love Reshapes Your Heart With Hope
I remember telling someone that I couldn’t look at the next pregnancy with hope. But God made me break that promise. The excitement of a new life was too much. The excitement of a redemption from the pain was too much.
And that’s why I think prayer is one of the most important things we do. If I hadn’t prayed through that pain. If I hadn’t poured my heart out to God during those dark nights. If I hadn’t clung to the prayers of a friend, I don’t think I would have believed the redemption story God was writing on my life.
I read recently that the three most important virtues in our lives are faith, hope, and love, but love is the only one that doesn’t pass away. We need all three to make it through this life, but God’s love is eternal and the definition of His character.
We need the faith in His promises to get us through the struggles, the discouragements, the valleys of pain. We need hope to get out of bed every day and continue this life. We need love to fuel the fire of our spirits and souls.
And that love pursues us. That great love doesn’t quit.
If you’re struggling with great pain today, please know that His love is greater. He feels your hurts, but He also heals your hurts.
In a Valley? Camp Here
When the valleys are deep, I camp out in Psalm 86. It’s brought me great comfort and I pray that this verse will push you to take those hurts to Him.
“For great is your love toward me; you have delivered me from the depths, from the realm of the dead.” (Psalm 86:13 NIV)
Please share this with someone who could use a dose of great love. Praying for you always, my friends.