Have you ever had a day when you could not fight your way out of a wet paper bag? Somehow, life had deflated your energy and you were absolutely worn out? All you could do was sit there and wonder what the day would bring, and pray you had enough strength to get through it. Warning: This is not the best place to be, because it means you are entering a valley just around the bend. It will be a time of loneliness, a time to look for answers and a time to feel defeated when they do not come. You walk aimlessly trying to find a place to lay your burdens down, but there seems to be no place in the valley, so you drop them in a heap and keep walking.
I have walked in the valley many times. I prayed to the Lord to send me any place, but not the valley. It is too lonely, too cold and has too many shadows of doubts fears lurking around every corner. But if I am honest I have to admit, it was in the valley that I learned where my help truly comes from. So many times I did not think I could take one more step in the shadows, but the Lord gave me enough light so I could see to keep going. One day as I was walking, I looked down and saw the most beautiful lily. I had been so deep in thought I nearly stepped on it. How could such a beautiful flower bloom where the sun hardly ever shone? It had the sweetest fragrance and was definitely blooming where it was planted. I wanted to stoop down and pick it up, but it was too beautiful. So I just sat down next to it, told it all my problems and let my tears of despair drip all over it. Somehow, someway, that little lily gave me hope.
I have asked the Lord time and time again, “why didn’t you just tell me? Why did you make me go through the valley?” I do not know why I even asked, because I knew in my heart of hearts what His answer would be. “Sandy, you always want the path of least resistance and sometimes circumstances of life makes us go down paths we would rather not go down. Some require a long, hard journey. In the valley we will have some one-on-one time. A time for you to learn to trust me a time to have peace and learn that I will take care of you no matter what life brings you way. There will always be a lily of hope, but you will have to look for it.
He told His followers the same thing in Matthew 5 and 6 as they were sitting on the side of a mountain listening to His Sermon on the Mount.
” And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? Why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.”
He was telling them to look around at all the lilies that surrounded them. The lilies were everywhere and blooming profusely. Will He do any less for us? He does not want us living a life of anxiety and fear. He wants us to trust Him.
So the next time you find yourself in a valley, start looking for a lily. Everyone has one, so please do not step on it!