Don't we all! From the moment of birth, entering into life: we walk through that valley of the shadow of death. Did you know there really is such a valley? It has steep cliffs and many caves, and it is easy to get lost there. Bandits would hide in the caves and ambush travelers passing through that long and narrow way and the travelers were easily set up to be beaten, robbed and left dead.
It's name, Wadi Kelt, which literally means the valley of the shadow. It lies between Jericho and Jerusalem, and is the main route by which shepherds would take their flocks from the Jordan river valley to the hill country of Judea. Some say this was the place where the man in the parable Jesus told, was beaten up and left for dead and the Good Samaritan came to his rescue.
But I am referring to that time as you age, where you deal with changes in your health and begin to wonder---"Hmmmm--is this perhaps the valley of the shadow of death I am entering into?"
Definitely seems like that place described in Jerusalem. Darkness of mind and spirit at times. Long and tedious and scary--and the journey can really get to you---IF YOU LET IT.
The last article written was REMAIN and with Whom. Well this journey that we enter into speaks the same message. Yea though I walk through the shadow of death I will fear no evil for Thou are WITH ME. Again for us to be aware of His Presence, we must keep our mind and life FIRM with Him and His Words. Otherwise all you see is the shadow.
Even that is great news, for someone once said If there is a Shadow in the valley---then we know that the SUN/SON is there too.
So for all those who are tired, weary, dealing with chronic illness, and yes terminal illnesses---and are starting to see the future as the Wadi Kelt--or walking towards death: Know that you are walking in the SHADOW of the Almighty. Rejoice, and be glad, trust and obey as He leads the way.
Psalm 23 can be the most comforting Psalm for us during this walk. For look at what all the Good Shepherd promises to do for us when we become His sheep under His Care. He prepares the place for us to rest, to feed us, and water us. If He sees we are in need of medical care, he anoints us with that sacred oil. Even with enemies in sight---NO PROBLEM. He protects us and leads us on the right way to go--and I LOVE THIS. He does all of this for HIS NAMESAKE!! Because of the need to protect His Promises and Reputation as ALMIGHTY God--He does all of this! Not because we are worthy enough, or earned that blessing ---no for HIS NAMESAKE, He restores, refreshes, anoints, protects, and leads us---making sure that we will dwell with Him all the days of our life! What reassurance this Psalm should be to any of us as we walk into that valley. As we walk period-- any moment of any day ---with our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father and the Holy Spirit!! What a TEAM to join and have on your side.
Please don't think you are far from that valley of death's entrance just because you are healthy, and young. Excuse me, have you not read or heard the news everyday? Perhaps you need to look for the Pasture that Jesus is shepherding---before it is too late, for no one knows the time or day death comes knocking on their door. Every 6 MINUTES, someone dies an accidental death in the USA. Every 6 minutes!
Yes I am in that valley of the shadow of death---as we all are---some sooner than others will see the valley's exit--but we know where we are going, following the Shepherd as He leads. As Padre Pio said, "Pray, Hope and don't Worry." Relax and enjoy the view. See what each new day shall bring--He is full of surprises and the 'suddenlies' and loves to shower you with His love.
"The Lord is My Shepherd, there is nothing I shall want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, (or white bed sheets). He leads me besides still waters, and restores my soul. He leads me on right paths for His Namesake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death--I shall fear no evil for Your rod and Your staff comfort me. You prepare a meal for me in the sight of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil and my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life and I will dwell in the House of the Lord FOREVER!" YES!!