When You Feel You Are In The Valley Alone
Dr. Harold Sala
And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me. Psalm 50:15, KJV
Andrew Murray had a philosophy of life which enabled him to go through periods of difficulty. In the flyleaf of an old Bible of mine is a clipping quoting Murray, who wrote, “In times of trouble, God’s trusting child may say, FIRST: He brought me here; it is by His will I am in this strait [difficult] place: in that will I rest. NEXT: He will keep me here in His love, and give me grace in this trial to behave as His child. THEN: He will make the trial a blessing, teaching me the lessons He intends me to learn, and working in me the grace He means to bestow. LAST: In His good time He can bring me out again–how and when, He knows. SAY: I am here– (1) By God’s appointment, (2) In His keeping, (3) Under His training, (4) For His time.”
Then Murray, who knew his own fair share of difficulty in his lifetime, quoted the great promise recorded in Psalm 50:15, “And call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.”
May I anticipate your thinking? Right now you are saying to yourself, “That may work for some people, but I don’t know if it would work for me.”
You’ve given up much too easily. You’ve assumed that God has special levels of promises for different people. That, of course, is the way life is, but not so with our heavenly Father. God–unlike some earthly parents–treats all His children the same way. If God moves especially quickly to help some, it is the child whose faith is weak, the widow who has no one to defend her, the person struggling with feelings of inadequacy and failure.
The bottom line response, simply put, is trust in the promises of God’s Word. Is your faith so fragile, so shallow that the first wind of difficulty causes you to question what has been the strength of generations: that God is a good God who will honor His Word and meet you at the point of your need?
This was the confidence of John Rippon, who in 1787 wrote, “When thro’ fiery trials thy pathway shall lie, / My grace, all sufficient, shall be thy supply;/ The flame shall not hurt thee; I only design/ Thy dross to consume, and thy gold to refine.”
One of the lasting impressions I have had of brothers and sisters in both China and the former U.S.S.R. who have spent long years in prison for their faith is that theirs is a solid faith, not subject to the capricious winds of prosperity which so many seem to associate with Christianity.
They have been through the fire, and they have discovered that God is enough. They have learned what Liddie Edmonds experienced, who wrote the words of what I consider to be my favorite hymn: “My faith has found a resting place, / Not in device or creed;/ I trust the ever living One, / His wounds for me shall plead. / I need no other argument, / I need no other plea;/ It is enough that Jesus died, / And that He died for me.”
A final thought: Whenever you go through the valley, it seems that you are the only person in the world who has ever been there, but look closely and you will discover the footprints of some of God’s choice servants who have been there and have discovered there is always a path which leads out to sunshine at the end of the valley. Remember the words of scripture, “Call upon me in the day of trouble and I will deliver you and you will glorify me.” Those words are still true friend. Trust Him, and you’ll discover that His grace is sufficient. It still is.