God is the only one who can make the valley of trouble a door of hope. Hosea 2.15
What a powerful statement of truth.
I’ve been home for a week from attending a one week seminar on Healing Care. It’s taken a few days for me to catch up, settle and process my experience. I met an incredible group of women with whom I had the beautiful privilege of coming together each day as we listened to each other’s stories, spoke words of encouragement and prayed.
We all enjoyed hours of morning contemplation, corporate times of worship, teaching, anointing and love from our heavenly Father, who faithfully met each of us right where we were.
Midweek, I felt a twinge in my back and within an hour, I was flat on my back for about 36 hours of back spasm. Despite the discomfort, those hours were the most precious to me. Initially, I felt like a turtle on his back and for a while, I fought the immobility. I wanted to be productive but I couldn’t concentrate on reading and I couldn’t move (every movement brought on a painful contraction) so I just lay there on a mattress in the middle of the living room, staring at the ceiling, while my roommates continued on with their day.
Definitely a valley of trouble.
This was a “longer then usual” back spasm and although I was forced to experience stillness, rather than voluntarily making time for it, I settled into the solitude well. I was reminded of Jeremiah, who was confined in the courtyard of the guard. The only way that Jeremiah could see light was to look up. The Lord came to him and said, ” Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” (Jeremiah 33.3)
Jeremiah knew his hope and health was from God alone. He waited with certainty, believing an answer was on the way.
Valley of trouble to door of hope.
Earlier in the week, I was reminded that every moment is a moment to move towards God . . . even when I was lying flat on my bed in a student dormitory living room. Alone. Unable to move. Quieted and stilled.
Silence helps us to be able to hear God’s voice and discern the nudging of the Spirit. Stillness gives the soul time to breathe.
I learned that day that silence is fasting words and stillness is fasting action.
And I waited to hear His gentle whisper.
The Lord said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by. Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave. Then a voice said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” 1 Kings 19. 11-13