Monday, January 31, 2011

The Valley Experiences in Our Life

Sorrow in the midst of joy.

The Lord has made some dramatic changes in me over the last year yet I still feel sorrow over the way I have spent the last 17 years in depression.  I lamented over the waisted time I spent wallowing in self pity, and the way I purposely separated myself from my kids and husband.  Living in the same house yet not engaging in their lives, Finding ways to occupy them, or occupy myself in order to avoid them,

because I felt so guilty.

I had a conversation with my mother the other day about my childhood.  I remembered that we were a very active family. My mother took us to the park, the zoo and roller skating.  Mom and Dad belonged to a bowling league a few times in their life together and we went along.  They belonged to church baseball leagues and we played, too. They took us snow skiing, both downhill and cross country.  They took us camping,  water skiing and cross country motorcycling nearly every weekend. I can't think of a sport we didn't do.

When I look back on our family life, there are just a few times we did things together. Just our little family of 5.  We did do things and thank God for our extended family because they were the ones who would plan things and we tagged along with them.  I used to blame my husband for not wanting to do anything but the truth is.

The ugly truth is.

I used it as an excuse to continue in my complacency.

If I complained loud enough that he was the cause of it, then no one would think I was the one. How sick is that!  

But now, He is changing my heart! 

The sorrow in the midst of joy is actually a blessing!  Because the changes going on in my heart prevent me from falling into a deep depression anymore.  The Holy Spirit reminds me of the lessons I have learned while I am in the midst of the sorrow. He did that for me on Saturday.  I lamented over the past with my husband and he stayed with me, ministering to me while I cried and I remembered that God taught me how to love again and the amazing BLESSING those years of depression turned out to be.

But God wasn't done showing me how much He loved me.  Sunday morning, we did something we rarely do.  We watched a sermon on TV.  And we were blessed even more. 

The following message is by Charles Stanley.  It is on the 23rd Psalm, one of the most loved passages in the Bible.  He teaches us that we learn more from our valley experiences than our mountain top ones and He covers why our trails are so very important to our Christian walk.  Please take a moment and listen to his message or read the notes or sermon outline below.

God blesses you in the valley.  We come out of it with more than you can ever imagine!

Kelley Jo

The Valley Experiences in Our Life- VIDEO 

No one can completely escape all suffering in life. But as believers in an all-powerful, loving God, we can face difficulties with confidence.

The Valley Experiences in Our Life- NOTES

The Valley Experiences in Our Life- Sermon Outline

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