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TV Sermon

The Believer’s Valley Experiences

Face difficulties with confidence and the assurance that God will guide your every step.

April 20, 2024

As believers, we can face difficulties with confidence and assurance. God will protect and watch over us—no matter the trials we experience. Dr. Stanley explains how God uses our pain to grab our attention so we will turn to Him.

Sermon Outline

The Believer’s Valley Experience

In the Bible, valleys symbolize times of trial and testing. We can expect to go through our own valleys in walking with God, and this week’s sermon shows us why we can trust Him to carry us through.

Key Passage: Psalm 23:1-6

Psalm 23, one of the best-known passages of the Bible, makes mention of a valley. In Scripture, valleys often symbolize difficulty, hardship, trial, suffering, and pain.

Valley experiences are inevitable in the life of every believer.

  • They may involve our finances, family, health, vocation, or something else.

  • Valleys often make us feel helpless. They appear as deep, dark, and treacherous places.

Why do we have valley experiences?

  • The sheep strays from the shepherd. (We choose to be disobedient to God, transgress His law, or violate His principles.)

  • The actions of others harm us.

  • The shepherd leads us into the valley as part of His design.

When God leads un into the valley…

  • He wants to accomplish something in us and chooses to let us experience suffering.

  • We must go through it — there is no way around. 

  • We can’t run through God’s valleys; we simply must walk.

Valley experiences are painful.

  • They cause feelings of intense hurt, hopelessness, and helplessness. 

  • They can make believers turn to the world for the help instead of to the Lord. But ungodly counsel worsens the situation.

What’s the solution?

  • Jesus holds your hand every step of the way. Pay attention to Him.

  • Read the Bible, pray, and apply its principles.

  • Seek discipleship that enriches your soul, deepens your relationship with God, and challenges you.

  • Know the words of Scripture so the Holy Spirit can call them to mind.

Valley experiences can be profitable. Through them…

  • God reveals Himself in a way that He does not on the mountain.

  • We can experience deep peace and tranquility despite our circumstances.

  • Our true character becomes clear.

  • God strips us of everything we cling to so we can lean on Him alone.

  • He is glorified through our dependence.

  • He affirms his call on our life.

  • He prepares, purifies, and refines us.

How should we respond in the valley? We should say to God:

  1. “What is Your goal for my life in this experience?”

  2. “How do You want to respond?”

  3. “All that I am, I lay down before You.”

  4. “All I have is Yours. I open my hands.”

After Watching

Consider these thoughts and questions in response to the sermon:

  • When the Lord leads you into a valley, remember the promise of Psalm 71:19-21. He will comfort you in times of anguish.

  • Have you experienced the “weeping of the spirit” that Dr. Stanley described? Thank God for the growth He enabled.

  • Who around you might be suffering a private trial? Pray for discernment about how best to minister to them this week.

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