Earlier this week, I went through a Bible study with a few other men from our community. The bible study was based on the 23rd Psalm. The author, Terry Wardle talked about a place in the Outback of Australia that is called “Never, Never.”
“Never, Never” is a place of excruciating heat. An area full of venomous snakes and scorpions. Someone who goes to “Never, Never” must endure the scorching climate and some of the deadliest creatures in the world. This place of extreme desolation is not for those who lack courage. For one to survive “Never, Never,” one must be bound and determined to persevere and endure all things.
King David mentions another deadly destination. Like the Australian Outback has “Never, Never,” Psalm 23 has “Even Though.” “Even though” is just as dangerous as “Never, Never” — if not more dangerous, because it leads to the valley of the shadow of death.
“Even Though” represents a place of trial and difficulty. “Even though you are in the hospital,” “Even though the doctor says there is nothing else they can do,” “Even though your marriage is failing,” or “Even though you have month left at the end of the money.”
There is something incredible about, “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death.” It is in that place where we will experience the goodness of God.
What “Even though” are you in at this point in your life? God’s love for you is an everlasting love and it remains unconditional as walk through the middle of “Even Though.”
“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil.” And the reason I will fear no evil is because “even though” becomes an experience.
There are six things that I have experienced with God in my own times of even though that come out of Psalm 23.
It is there in the even though that I have experienced God being with me. In fact, God has never left me. Even though at times I was not faithful, even though I said and did the wrong things, God was still faithful.
God’s rod and staff comfort me. I find in times of trouble or times of confusion, God’s instruction in the word and the leading of the Holy Spirit has seen me through. I am so thankful that his word is a lamp onto my feet and a light onto my path.
God prepares provision and prosperity for me in front of my enemy. The devil prowls around like a roaring lion seeking to devour me. However, God has prepared a table in front of my adversary. I have this promise from Philippines 4:19, which says My God shall supply all my needs according to His riches in glory.
My cup, filled with God’s blessing, overflows as I am writing this. The song, “Fill my cup, Lord,” by Jessie Dixon came to my mind. The first verse goes like this, “Like the woman at the well, I am seeking for things that could not satisfy. And then I heard my savior speaking, ‘Draw from my well that never shall run dry.’ Fill my cup Lord, I lift it up Lord, come and quench this thirsting of my soul. Bread of heaven, feed me till I want no more. Fill my cup, lift it up and make me whole.”
Praise the Lord! In the presence of my enemies, my cup overflows!
Goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life — even in the midst of “Even though,” I have God’s goodness and mercy.
I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. Even though I’m walking through the valley of the shadow of death, I belong to Jesus and he is the Lord of my life. I will dwell in His house forever.
Blessings to you and your family, have a great week.
Dave Truncone is the pastor of First Assembly of God Church in Van Buren. He is married to Heidi and they have two daughters, Hannah and Abigail. They live in Van Buren.