Why Have Faith in the Valley?
“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me...”
Psalms 23:4 KJV
I have cancer. Stage IV. Metastatic. I’m 38 with an incredible wife and three awesome kids. My job as a minister is to help children and churches around the world. I’m a person of faith. If I am honest, though, sometimes I just think, “Why even ask God to cure me when the odds are stacked so much against me? I watched my own mom suffer and pass away from this disease. I prayed for her to be healed. Nothing happened, and she died. Why have faith? Is God even listening to me?”
If we are honest, as humans, we’ve all had these types of thoughts in our lives.
However, the more I have thought about this Psalm, the more I’ve realized that the emphasis is not the valley of the shadow of death, but that God is with him. I don’t know about you, but I often attach my faith to a certain outcome. I pray for a certain request, and if the outcome is not what I asked for then my faith is rattled. After reading this verse, I wonder how our perspective would change if we attached our faith less to an outcome and more to an outlook. Instead of focusing on the valley (the outcome), we focus on the fact that God is with us (the outlook). Whatever it is you are praying for that you are doubting, try to shift your thoughts to this truth: God is with you no matter the outcome.
Yes, I am praying that the cancer spots will disappear. Yes, I am praying that the medicine the doctors give me can cure me and heal my body! I believe these things can and will be true, but also, I am focusing on the outlook that God is with me, even in the valley. ■
A needed reminder.