In the Valley

Here is a great quote from an unknown source.  If anyone can identify the author for me I would greatly appreciate it.  Whoever penned this piece of divine wisdom should be given due credit.

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.” – Unknown.

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