I love going to Maggie Valley, North Carolina. It is one of my most favorite spots to vacation...or really just to get away. I love the mountains, and being in the valley I can look in any direction and see them. But also going on a ride up the mountain pass, I can also look out over many valleys and see exactly where the hand of God has touched. It's everywhere!
The mountains are beautiful. So is the valley. Yet, some valleys are not so beautiful. Like the spiritual valley we sometimes find ourselves in when we hit a slump. I'm not really fond of that particular valley. However, I have learned that when I slide into the valley, I am there for a reason, so it might be a good idea to look around, check out my surroundings, see what I can learn, and figure out an exit for this valley!
Sometimes we get out of sorts when we find ourselves in the valley. But really, how else are we going to learn anything or grow stronger in our walk with the Lord if we DON'T walk through the valley? In the twenty-third Psalm, David writes about walking through the valley. I guess if David can do it, so can we!
Yea, 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. ~Psalms 23:4, NKJV
It never says that we will die in the valley. We'll just walk through the "valley of the shadow of death." But God is there with us, which is comforting to know. And not only does He walk through it with us, He protects us and comforts us while we are there! So I guess the valley isn't as devastating as it might seem.
We all like those mountain-top experiences though, don't we! I love being on top of the mountains. It's beautiful to look out, down, and all around and see the beauty that God created. But I also know that eventually we have to come down off the mountain and go back into the valley. But if you look around while there, you can find many beautiful things as well.
It's the same in life, too. We can't have mountain-top experiences without a trip through the valley. Because while in the valley, that's where we learn something new, or experience something amazing, or have a face-to-face encounter with God that will shoot us right back up on the top of the mountain!
Have you had a "Valley Lesson" lately?