Thursday, February 19, 2009

God will make your trial and trail a blessing.

Psa 84:6 Who passing through the valley of Baca make it a well.
Have you been through Baca? Baca is a valley in Israel, the name of which means "weeping". Ishmael and Hagar cried (baka’) to God for aid in the wilderness after Abraham left them in a deserted area. There, in that valley, God heard them and blessed them. The great well Zamzam it’s actually a spring that sprang up in answer to their cry.
Sorrow is a part of our human experience. Mountaintop joy means little if we cannot contrast it with valley woe.

Jesus took the valley route often. He wept over Jerusalem's refusal to find refuge under His wings. He wept at the death of Lazarus and the subsequent sorrow of his friends and family. The Scripture calls the Savior a man of sorrows, acquainted with grief.

What kept Him going through that difficult Baca valley? The joy that was set before Him. Basically, the place back at His Father's side.

We also have much to look forward to. Joy awaits us when we finally make our way out of the valley of weeping. We are destined for victorious mountain tops.

But our passage here shows that, for a person to be able to make a well in the valley of Baca, he or she must first make preparation. Initially, one has to long for God's house. There they fellowship, praise, worship, sacrifice, learn and serve the King of Glory. Strength for the valley of Baca is garnered from the Lord's house. Verses 1 and 2 show this.

And then, we find the valley of Baca is made a blessing for the individual who has made use of the church altar. Verse 3. An altar is the place where we meet God and lay bare our heart and soul. It is a place where we do our most serious business with our Lord. If we miss His house, we miss an opportunity to be blessed at an altar.

And then, according to verse 4, the Baca valley is made much more tolerable for the person who is still praising God. Imagine one person reluctantly, drudgingly making his way into Baca, humming in a minor key, "Well, it's cryin' time again!"

Meanwhile another, filled with the Holy Spirit, praising God for His goodness, making melody in her heart to the Lord, and giving thanks for all things. This person is the one who sees the possibilities of this lonesome valley and there makes a refreshing well.

Also, the Baca traveler who finds a blessing in the valley is a person who operates in the strength and power of the Lord rather than leaning on the arm of fallible human flesh. Vs 5.

Operating by flesh power is a frustrating endeavor. What a huge contrast to live by the credo of the Apostle Paul who said, I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.

Friend, valleys of weeping are inevitable. There are times when there is no other path. David said, Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for thou art with me, thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me.

The word "yea" that David uses portends the certainty of such an endeavor.

Our choice then is, are we going to cower through the valley? Will we feel sorry for ourselves and seek solace from others also navigating that difficult trail? Or will we allow God to use those tears to cleanse our vision? Can we allow our valley sufferings to become mountain ministries?

Know this, child of God, the Lord does not lead us into box canyons but valleys which have an entrance and an exit. So, make a well while you are there, be refreshed and emerge to a greater joy on the other side.

No comments: