Facedown In The Valley


The following letter was written by a young girl in the school that I have been working at. Her mother was diagnosed with breast cancer in April. And this is her letter of falling facedown before God in the valley.

“We pray for courage in times of tribulation – then question our Commander’s battle plan. We pray to be made perfect – then run at the first sight of the refining fire. We pray for brokenness – then flee the Potter’s hands.

“All too often our Savior’s merciful act of sanctification is met by our doubt when we discover that His path may lead us down the valley of the shadow of death. How foolish it is for us to demand peaceful green pastures, as if we expect to be carried to Heaven’s skies on “flowery beds of ease.” We erroneously see these valleys as periods of abandonment, when they are actually demonstrations of Christ’s perfect love.

“Our Father gives only good gifts to his children: this is His character, and as such is not subject to change. The man that proclaims his gratitude only when “the Lord giveth” has much to learn. When “the Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away”, man often forgets gratitude and screams injustice has befallen him. He searches for any visible exit, then sprints toward escape.

“But God did not design these tests so man could cheat. He designed these tests so man could be made more like the image of His Son. When we finally see God as truly good and merciful beyond compare, we will not flee. We will instead fall face down in the valley before the Lord of perfect love and worship His majestic sovereignty.

“This humble submission is where peace and joy can be experienced; the misery comes when we lean on our own understanding and attempt to climb out of the valley. My Commander will give me His strength, and I will stay in the valley He has ordained.

“When I pray to be made perfect by God’s grace, I will welcome His refining fire. When I pray for brokenness, I will rest in the Potter’s outstretched hands. Only then will I be able to repeat, “The Lord giveth, and the Lord taketh away; blessed be the name of the Lord.”

This letter reminded me of Matt Redman’s song, “Blessed Be Your Name.”

Blessed Be Your Name
In the land that is plentiful
Where Your streams of abundance flow
Blessed be Your name
Blessed Be Your name
When I’m found in the desert place
Though I walk through the wilderness
Blessed Be Your name
Every blessing You pour out
I’ll turn back to praise
When the darkness closes in, Lord
Still I will say

Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your name
Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your glorious name

Blessed be Your name
When the sun’s shining down on me
When the world’s ‘all as it should be’
Blessed be Your name

Blessed be Your name
On the road marked with suffering
Though there’s pain in the offering
Blessed be Your name

Every blessing You pour out
I’ll turn back to praise
When the darkness closes in, Lord
Still I will say

Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your name
Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your glorious name

You give and take away
You give and take away
My heart will choose to say
Lord, blessed be Your name

(c) 2002 Thank You Music

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