Even Though

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death…

Dear Lord,

When I started through this journey of praying through the 23rd Psalm, I knew that I would not like getting to this part.

I’m glad that this wasn’t the first sentence of this Psalm. I needed to know what kind of Shepherd You are, how good You are. My awareness of Your guidance, Your desire to lead me to still and quiet places, is where my ┬áheart wants to be.

Even though…

I suppose that for the rest of my earthly trek I will continue to ponder the significance of the loss of our son in relation to your presence and power. My mind drifts back over David’s sweet and calm lyrics.

The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want … even though.

He makes me lie down in green pastures… even though.

He leads me beside quiet waters, He restores my soul … even though.

He guides me in paths of righteousness for His name’s sake … even though.

Those two words reflect the subtext of grief in my life. It doesn’t make sense. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death – MUST I?

Is Your leading and guiding taking me through the most treacherous place my ┬áheart has ever been? Do You have to drag me through the hell of suffering in order to get me to the calm and quiet? Is Your ability somehow limited in some way that I do not know? What else will You allow me to suffer along this journey? Didn’t You know that this crushing loss would be more fierce to me than the most ravenous wolf? Wasn’t there another way? And weren’t You my son’s Shepherd too? While I am confident that he is now resting near quiet waters where we all long to be, I am left behind with questions and pain.

In the blackest of shadows, Shepherd, please take my hand. This valley of death is frightening beyond words. Yes, I have questions. Yes, my faith has some holes. Yes, I’ve questioned everything. But dear God, would You please continue to be my Shepherd…

Even though.

~John

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