"When the oceans rise and thunders roar,
I will soar with You above the storm.
Father, You are king over the flood.
I will be still and know You are God."
"I will be still and know You are God." What strength it takes to simply be still, especially when we're walking through the valley of the shadows of this life. Whether the valley you're walking through is due to a recent diagnosis to yourself or someone you love, the pain and the aching that comes from a broken relationship, the loss of someone you love, a secret that you're carrying, or something else that you're struggling with, I think we all can agree that sometimes it's hard to just "be still." He is the healer of all our sadness. He is love to our shattered and broken hearts. He is our peace when fears are crippling. Sometimes it's just hard to be still and know that He is Lord. It's so hard.
I live a blessed life with family and friends that love me. I have a place to come home to. I'm involved with an incredible campus ministry where I have some truly incredible friends. I have a wonderful church family that I adore. I have so much in my life to be thankful for.
But sometimes, life is hard.
Although I live a life full of love and abundant blessings, life is still a journey of mountains and valleys, mountains high and valleys low. The one thing I am trying to truly wrap my heart around as I grow older is that “the God on the mountain is still God in the valley." Even as Christians, although we know as long as we stay faithful that we have an eternity free of sadness ahead of us, we also know that we all have things in life that bring us down. Life is a hard thing to go through alone, but The Lord reminds us that we don't have to. This is often something I forget. I forget that the same God that is standing beside me through the times when everything in my life seems picture perfect is also the same God who is waiting to dry my tears when I'm screaming and crying into my pillow during the nights when I feel alone. The God who is there to hold my hand when I'm walking in the light is the God who is holding my hand when I'm standing in the darkness.
So how do we learn to "be still" when we're walking through the shadows and trying to understand where life is taking us? When we're standing in the darkness just searching for the smallest ounce of light? I'm a twenty year old college student who has no idea where my future is headed. To me, that's so scary. Right now, "being still" is something I'm beginning to struggle with. I pray for certain things to happen in my life and they turn out the complete opposite. Or I pray for God to do or show something in my life and it doesn't happen right away, so I question if it's going to happen at all. It’s a struggle, but I’m trying. I’m trying to be still while at the same time trying to balance an anxious heart and putting all of my faith and trust in The Lord.
I believe that the key to being still is "soaring with God through the storm." In other words, I believe that the key to being still is continuing to walk with Jesus through the heartaches and uncertainties of this life and knowing that He is and will take care of you. I don't always do that. It's not that I stop walking with Jesus when things get tough. Sometimes, I just walk in the opposite direction. Instead of running towards Him and His promises, I try and run away because I don't always know how to handle things. I think sometimes I lose sight of Heaven. I get so distracted and thrown of by my own feelings that I forget how beautiful Heaven is going to be. A place where no tears, sadness, or heartache exists. A place where being still and soaring with Him through the storm will be worth it.
I know in my heart that the valleys of this life are nothing compared to the glory we'll see when we get to Heaven. I know that every tear, every anxious thought, every heartache that we have ever felt and every valley of the shadows that we have ever walked through will all be worth it when we reach those sweet and beautiful streets of gold. But I also know that even as Christians, life is hard at times. If you're a Christian, please don't for a second think that you have to have it all together. If you aren't a Christian, please don't think for a second that Christians do. But the thing about Christians that face the mountains and valleys of this life, we have a promise. A promise so great and beautiful that we must cling to:
Jesus has overcome this world. Jesus has overcome the pain and sorrows that this life brings. Jesus has overcome these valleys and we can too.