Bob MacDonald Ministries
Laying Apostolic Foundations
Bob MacDonald Ministries
Saskatoon
Canada
bob@bobmacdonaldministries.com
Copyright BobMacDonaldMinistries 2013. All rights reserved.
Mountains. We had a wonderful time in God's magnificent
creation. As we drove, we faced the usual ups and downs of
mountain travel and would see a splendid mountain peak ahead
We were excited to soon be on the heights and to see an even
larger view of the surrounding mountains. Very shortly we found
ourselves driving down a mountain side and into a valley. The
valley caused us to look up to see the height and splendor of the
mountain ahead. The valley almost seemed to be necessary to
make the mountain heights more awesome and necessary before
we could travel upward.

In our life as spiritual leaders in Christ's church, we will pass
through valleys before we move onto the heights of what God has
for us to be doing. It is helpful to recognize the "valley" times, what
is happening in them and what we should do.

In the Bible, we see many of God's leaders going through this
process of the valley. Consider Joseph in the land of Egypt.
Joseph had fantastic prophetic dreams from God about sheaves
of wheat bowing down before him and the sun, moon and 11 stars
bowing before him. It was a true revelation from God that did
come to pass in the future. However, what Joseph did not see at
the time of the dreams were the necessary valleys required to get
to that place. Those valleys included being sold by his brothers,
being a slave in Egypt, being falsely accused and being in thrown
in jail.

There are several tests we undergo in our times of the valley. God
is testing us to purify our hearts. In the same way that a jeweler
puts the fire onto the gold to make it more valuable by removing
the impurities, even so God is as a "refiner's fire (Mal 3:3) to us.
Our motives and
attitudes are exposed so that we can repent of them. Our ways
are revealed so we can align ourself with God. He is testing us to
teach us new things about Himself, His Word and His ways so
that we will be prepared for the next phase of our leadership. God
tests us with the expectation that we will pass the test and move
onto the new heights being fully prepared and equipped.

The devil is testing us in the valley. He is trying to get us to give up
on our call to the ministry, to abandon doing things God's way and
even to turn our backs on "so great a salvation" (Heb 2:3). During
these testing times Satan often makes us offended at others for
the way they have treated us. He will also try to make us offended
at God by getting us to believe that God has somehow let us
down or has been unfair to us. Satan tests us with the expectation
that we will fail the testing of our faith. He is trying to get us off the
course of God's will.

Our prophetic words are also testing us to see if we will continue
to believe what God has said even though our circumstances
seem to be going the opposite way of the prophetic word. Psalm
105:19 states, "Until the time that Joseph's word came, the word
of the Lord tried him." We are often being tried by the prophetic
word of the Lord spoken over our lives. These words are creative
and so are seeking to bring about the necessary changes in us
and our circumstances so
we can see the fullness of God's declared good intentions for our
future.

The question we often ask is, "How do I make it through the time
of our valley?" Jesus guides the way as we see Him going
through the valley in the Garden of Gethsemane. We see Jesus
humbling Himself. The valley is the time to humble ourselves
before God and participate with Him to make all the needed
changes in our lives. We see Jesus choosing the Father's will
over His own. The valley is a time to die to our ambitions and
self-preservation tendencies and dedicate ourselves to His will.
The valley is a time to drop all offences toward those who have
hurt us and maligned us. It is time to work on a positive attitude. It
is time to let go of the old ways and learn the new things God is
preparing us to do.

The next time you are driving through the mountains - or even
through some of the many valleys - remember that the valley of our
experiences is like a gateway to the new heights that God has
prepared for us to move into. Pass the tests in the valley and
prepare to move to higher ground in your calling and ministry. In
God's plan for us, the valleys seem to be necessary to go higher.