BY ELLEN MARTIN
Psalm 23 is a familiar passage for most of us. Psalm 23:4 says “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.”
When I read a Bible passage that is familiar to me, I don’t really spend time mediating on it because I think I already know it. But although we may be familiar with a passage, we should spend time meditating on and studying it. God reveals things to us through His Word, regardless if we have read that passage before or not.
Psalm 23, especially verse 4, resonates with me because it is saying that through the difficult times, God is there. We have nothing to fear. This one verse goes beyond saying that we have nothing to feel to say that God comforts us with His rod and His staff. Even through difficult times, God is teaching us something. It may be difficult to see it in that moment, but in hindsight we may be able to see what God was doing.
Psalm 147:3-6 says “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. He determines the number of the stars; he gives to all of them their names. Great is our Lord, and abundant in power; his understanding is beyond measure. The Lord lifts up the humble; he casts the wicked to the ground.”
God heals the brokenhearted. He comforts. He is all powerful. He is in control. God may allow us to go through trials (just to be clear, not necessarily as a punishment), but at the end it is for our good (Romans 8:28).
In situations, I know it is difficult to have the attitude of “this is all going to be good one day and this is a good thing”. God understands, and the Bible emphasizes that he does care so lovingly for and about us. Through difficult situations, God may be giving you a skill or experience that you can use to bless others with. God is not punishing you with hard times, but rather sharpening you to use that experience for good.
When I look back through the tough times in my life and the mistakes I have made, I can see that God was using those to shape me into who I am today. It is difficult to accept some situations, but we need to trust God and that He knows what is best for us.
Isaiah 55:8-9 says “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”
God knows best. He sees the whole picture, not just the moment like we do. It is hard to trust Him completely sometimes, but we need to ask Jesus to help us to rely on Him and His strength. How comforting it is to know that we can trust Him and His will for our lives
Ellen Martin is a follower of Jesus Christ. She has started her own academy for underprivileged students with learning disabilities or other struggles. She is passionate about creation, apologetics, and children. You can follow her at @ellenmartin03.