God Is

Day 19

He’s There In the Darkness

Read your Bible: Psalm 23:1–4

Spotlight Verse:

Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.Psalm 23:4

One of the most profound letters I’ve received recently was from a man who heard me speak at a summer conference:

I first heard you speak a couple years ago. At the time it had been 9 years since my son had died (at 4 months old) of a genetic disease. For 4 months, I asked one question: Why my son?

After the funeral I stood there like so many have done before me and yelled at God: Why my son? Why? Why? Why? My God, who saved my soul and loved me, tell me the %$&!ing reason!!!

I was so mad, and so focused on wanting things in my own control, that I stood there for a long time, defiant, thinking “I will not give one inch until I get an answer!” But I didn’t get an answer.

Right after this, I went downhill. I went into depression, lost my job, took medication to keep me sane. My wife and other son stood there wondering why I had flipped out and couldn’t accept what happened.

“Come on, Daddy, you know Brady’s in heaven,” my 3-year-old son would say! “You know that Jesus and His Dad are taking care of him!” A 3-year-old would say this, but a grown adult wouldn’t accept it.

As you can imagine, life was not too good at home. There were constant battles.

Well I have to tell you, the service that night two years ago touched not only my mind, but my soul deep inside. I felt like my whole soul was being exposed and opened up. All the rotting stench that I had carried with me and even worshipped was all in front of me. Nine years of standing there, gritting my teeth and growling at God — how could I have even heard Him if He was talking to me?

Later at communion I sat in the back pew with my wife waiting for the service to get over with… I bowed my head… and all of a sudden it was like everything changed around me. I don’t know if you can understand, but it was like everything else disappeared and I was sitting in the pew all by myself with no one there. I sat there crying with my head down and then had a sense of the warm Spirit of God touching me.

Then it was as if God’s Spirit whispered to me, “It’s ok, it’s ok… he is with me… I will take care of him, and he will be very well taken care of, so don’t worry. And I am always here for you, too. So don‘t worry.”

I sat there and cried — like my whole being was being transformed and healed with this warmth throughout my body and soul.

The next thing I knew, I was aware of being in the communion service again, with all the noise and the people around me. I went up and took communion, and for the first time in nine years understood again what communion was about.

Now, to the depths of my being, I understood the answer to my question.

Jesus did come and die for us, but more than just dying like my son, he was raised again and is living in heaven by his Father, while He is also sitting next to me all the time, loving me, and while He is loving me, he is loving my son Brady too!

I understand that no matter what, God’s love for me is always there, even when I stood for nine years rejecting it. He loves me.

Well, now every time I take communion I cry a little bit. I cry because of what I know is so very true! My life has passion again!

Even though you walk through the darkest valley, He is right there with you.

The Lord does not always lead you around the valley of the shadow of death, But when you are in it, He is right there, leading you all the way through to green pastures, quiet waters, and His house, where you will dwell forever.

God is… with me in my darkest times.

Questions For Reflection

How does this man’s letter impact you?

Name all of the benefits of God’s presence listed in
Psalm 23.