Just some early morning thoughts from me to you…

“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. 
He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters.
He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.
Even 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.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”
Psalm 23 (ESV)

We’ve all done it.

Replaying over-and-over the video which captured all the valley moments of our lives.

Weighing once again on our minds and hearts those times we wish had never happened. Times we wish we could forget, or at least remember a whole lot less.

When our hearts were broken by the unexpected loss of a loved one. 

When our lives got off track. And we struggled to find the right path back.

An illness hit after one just left. The valley of the shadow of death, or another translation—the valley of deep darkness—becomes too real for us and we don’t know where to turn.

So, our growing pity party leads us to despair, anxiety, depression and a sense of hopelessness. And we don’t know what to do, so we keep digging, keep whining, as we allow the clouds of darkness continue to cover us.   

Rather than punching our heads through the clouds to play the video of all the moments on the mountaintops which have also been a blessed part of our lives.

The gift of life, and all the passions, potential within us, platforms to lift lives around us, and the never-ending purpose of God for our lives to touch the world around us with and for Him. 

The gifts of loved ones who walk with us through the good and difficulty times. Friends who remain friends in all we face. The gift of God and His never-ending Grace, demonstrated through the gift of His Son, our Savior and Lord.

And through all of those moments on the mountains and through the valleys, to remember God was always there. Never alone.

Tauren Wells wrote the song “Hills and Valleys” introduced to me a few days ago by a dear fox-hole friend. 

Here are a few words of encouragement he shares—

“I’ve walked among the shadows, You wiped my tears away.
And I’ve felt the pain of heartbreak, and I’ve seen the brighter days.
And I’ve prayed prayers to heaven, from my lowest place.
And I have held the blessings God, You give and take away.
No matter what I have, Your grace is enough.
No matter where I am, I’m standing in Your love.
On the mountains, I will bow my life to the One who set me there.
In the valley, I will lift my eyes to the One who sees me there,
When I’m standing on the mountain, I didn’t get there on my own.
When I’m walking through the valley I know I am not alone.
You’re God of the hills and valleys hills and valleys,
God of the hills and valleys, and I am not alone…”

What are you facing? What are you going through?

Remember that in the hills and in the valleys—you are never alone.

God’s goodness and mercy will lead you and follow you all the days of your life.

Take His hand. He is there—in the hills and valleys of your life.   

In His Name–Scott

Listen to and enjoy this blessing by Tauren Wells of “Hills and Valleys.”