Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Walk Don't Run!

The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside quiet waters. He restores my soul;
He guides me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I 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 have anointed my head with oil; my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and lovingkindness will follow me all the days of my life,
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. (Psalm 23)

Recently for the first time in many years, I found myself at an indoor swimming pool. I was participating in a relay race and had to go to the other end of the pool. I gingerly walked across the slick tile pool deck. As the warm humidity and the smell of chlorine hit me, childhood memories flooded back from my years on a swim team. I could hear in my mind the lifeguards blowing their shrill whistles and shouting, "Walk. Don't run."

A friend who is a pastor here in town says there is a reason that Psalm 23 doesn't say...."Even though I RUN through the valley of the shadow of death".

But that is what we really want to do isn't it! Hurry through whatever is painful, unpleasant, and uncomfortable in our lives! Prayers are more often along the lines of, "Get me out of here" than not.

There gifts embedded in the walk through our valleys. Psalm 23 says there will be no fear...that God is with us...that we are comforted...that we will know God's provision...that we are blessed...that we experience abundance...

Somehow I think we would miss all this if we ran through the valley.

grace and peace...

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