Wrote a Lenten Reflection for “Already and Not Yet: A Daily Lenten Devotional by members of the Andover Newton Community.”  (Andover Newton Theological School is my Alma Mater.)
March 16, 2018
“Walking through the Valley” – Rev. Lauren Lorincz

We began our trek through Wadi Qelt after visiting St. George’s Monastery.
The bright sun beat down on us. 
My backpack felt heavy.
The rocky path wound on and on, seemingly endless.

We were told that this could be “the valley of the shadow of death” (Psalm 23:4).
It could be the path Jesus referenced in The Good Samaritan, when the man was “going down from Jerusalem to Jericho.” (Luke 10:30)
All I knew is that, for me, this path was too high and the valley was too far below; I had been terrified of heights since childhood.

Sometimes walking the metaphorical (or literal!) rocky path through the wilderness, in between the already and not yet, is scary. It’s formative. It’s life-changing. We tell ourselves that fear is the opposite of faith. We contemplate Jesus asking his disciples, with compassion or perhaps exasperation: “Why are you afraid, you of little faith?” (Matthew 8:26)

And yet, fear sinks into our hearts too.
What do we do?
We keep walking.
One foot in front of the other.
Focused on the companions beside us on the journey.
Taking the next faithful step forward, together.

Praying to God along the way, “Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I fear no evil; for you are with me.” (Psalm 23:4)

Rev. Lauren Lorincz (MDiv ’10) is Pastor of Colchester Federated Church in Colchester, CT.