by Rick Warren — January 18, 2023
From Living in the Goodness of God
“Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me.”
Psalm 23:4 (NIV)
You may not be in the valley of the shadow of death right now, but you may be in another valley. Valleys are the hard places on your journey, where it’s easy to doubt or overlook God’s goodness. But you can always trust that God walks through the valleys with you. And he’s promised to bring you through to the other side.
Psalm 23:4 says, “Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me” (NIV).
Here are three truths to remember when you are in the valley:
1. You are not alone. God is with you.
The shadows in your life are evidence of the presence of light. How do you deal with a shadow? You turn your back to the shadow and look at the light. Jesus said, “I am the light for the world! Follow me, and you won’t be walking in the dark. You will have the light that gives life” (John 8:12 CEV).
The Bible says that God is light and that in him there is no darkness at all. You need to stop focusing on the dark things that scare you: those bills, health concerns, or worries about your children or aging parents. When you move your focus off your fears, you can focus on the Father.
2. God has a good purpose for your valley.
God cannot do evil. Even when you’re facing problems, conflict, grief, fear, or failure, God is at work, creating good from your valley.
Romans 5:3-5 says, “We rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us” (ESV).
3. The reward will last forever.
You’re going to be rewarded for remaining faithful to Christ in the valley of failure, in the valley of fear, in the valley of conflict, in the valley of grief, and in the valley of trouble. You’ll be in heaven less than a minute before thinking, “Why did I complain so much? Why did I worry when I was going through those valleys? God was right there with me all the time, and he was good to me all the time.”
As the Bible says, “For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever!” (2 Corinthians 4:17 NLT).