Today’s Reading: Lamentations 3:1-66 

In a world so apparently defined by tragedy, loss and failure, how often do the words faith, hope and love ring true, realistic or possible? Do they sound more like  religious denial in the face of overwhelming evidence that there is nothing to believe in, nothing to look forward to, and nothing that can be done?

The greatest devastation for any culture is not that it will be forgotten, but that it will become forgetful. We are wandering aimlessly in a deep state of amnesia. We have become so self-focused that we have forgotten what God says about the valleys of life.

Jesus said in John 16, “In the world you will have trouble.” It’s not a matter of if, it’s when. Valleys in life are just inevitable, but they are also unpredictable. You can’t plan them, time them, or schedule them. Valleys are always unexpected. They usually come at the worst time — when you don’t have time, when you’re unprepared. Have you ever had a flat tire at a good time? They just happen. And usually when you least need them and it’s most inconvenient. It would be very great if we could schedule our down times in life but we can’t – Jeremiah 4:20 “Disaster follows disaster… In an instant my tents are destroyed, my shelter falls in a moment.”

It is at these times it’s vital that we remember: Valleys are only temporary They don’t last. They are not a permanent location. David says, “Even though I walk through the valley…” The valley is not something you stay in your entire life. It’s something you go through — a circumstance, a situation that has a season to it. When you’re in a valley you often think it’s a dead end, but it’s not. They don’t come into your life to stay. They come to pass. 1 Peter 1:6 “In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials.

There is an old Arab parable that says: All sunshine and no rain makes a desert.” If you never have any down times, dark times, gloomy times in your life you’ll be dried up. You’ll have no depth to yourself, no maturity. It takes good times and bad times to make a mature person. Life is a mixture of pain and pleasure, of victory and defeat, of success and failure, of mountain tops and valleys. But in every circumstance we must remember that God is Faithful!!

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