Trusting God in the Valley

Aug 9, 2023

Reading time: 4 Minutes

Asian man lifting his hand in worship

Anyone who knows me well knows I am all about process improvement. I am a fixer! Whether it’s a work process or a better means to enhance the way systems need to operate at the grocery store, I am often offering my input into how things can or “should” function better.


I recently attended a weekly women’s Bible study on Elijah, one of the greatest prophets in Scripture. This study aimed to focus on learning to commit to God’s process. Elijah did not just all of a sudden show up on Mt. Carmel with bold faith, confidence, wisdom, and courage to be used as a vessel for one of God’s miracles. Prior to this, his voyage included several towering and demanding situations. He was considered to be a traumatized prophet! He traveled through many seasons, which included anxiety, depression, disobedience, isolation, hunger, anger, doubt, crippling fear, and shame.


At one point, God told Elijah to leave, turn, and hide. WHY??? (I Kings 17:2-4) Many of the ladies were trying to figure out what God was leading them to separate from, what He was turning them toward, and that hiding for a season is often the course of action to reach that next destination.


At the beginning of this course, I genuinely sensed God had brought me into this class at this particular time to provide hope and expectancy; I felt as if I had finally come through another one of these long and difficult seasons.


The “hiding away” part can feel like torture. As I suffered through extreme depression and heartache for many years, struggling to get out of bed in the morning, breaking into tears often throughout the day, and offering little to no assistance to anyone else around me, I often wondered why I still existed and, “Who in the world would want what I have?” (referring to my walk with the Lord).


I felt I no longer had purpose. My mind would consider this long, drawn-out process something similar to what my co-workers and I like to call a “workaround”; or what we refer to when the correct “quick” process cannot be completed due to system or other work-related constraints.


When I see my friends walking through agonizing trials, I want to wave it all away, fix it for them, or somehow accelerate their development. But they must walk through their own process for whatever God is working in, out, or through them. Sometimes God provides me an offering of advice or counsel, but He regularly reminds me that the best thing I can do for them is to listen and pray. Prayer is most often the assignment God asks us to fulfill when we “carry each other’s burdens” (Gal. 6:2).


I’m hoping God enjoys the sense of humor He gave me. At times, I sarcastically point out to God that “I have so many great ideas and suggestions. Why aren’t you taking me up on them?” My prayer partners chuckle with me when I disclose that I oftentimes offer God all my “better” ways to accomplish things, as if He hadn’t already thought of them, or even different or greater than I “could ever ask or think” (Eph. 3:20).


One day I found and sent them this verse: Romans 11:34 (The Passion Translation): “For who has discovered how the Lord thinks or is wise enough to be the one to advise him in his plans?”


We got a good laugh out of it, knowing God has something to say about even this.


Through my pain, my trust in God has grown greater than before. He has strengthened my faith and given me vast assurance and anticipation for my future. This also came through many years of prayer and speaking Scripture over my life. It has produced bolder, more confident, faith-filled prayers, trusting in God completely that His promises will come to pass. God’s Word will not return void (Isa. 55:11)!


A couple of months have gone by since I completed this study. Knowing it won’t be until my last breath that I will arrive at my final destination, I now find myself in yet another part of my life journey. I am currently in a holding spot of rest and waiting on God for whatever comes next. It is often difficult for me to not try to jump ahead and figure things out for myself.


Maybe you are walking through trials now, or maybe God knows something is not good for you, or He may just be calling you out of your comfort zone. Or, it may be that God has something new for you and you just can’t see it yet! Are you willing to journey like Elijah did to cultivate what Elijah got? We cannot remain comfortable and complacent. Obedience and surrender are key to allowing God to position you to see and to be used as a vessel of God’s power.


We are all works in progress. Trust His process!


“For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:9 (NKJV)

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