Is being in a Wilderness a bad thing? Not necessarily.
We often go through a desert time in our journey. I spent seven years very much alone, yet not alone. I kicked and fought, shed many tears, when I first entered my own personal desert. It took me some time to gain an appreciation for such a dry and deserted place. Eventually, I learned to lean into it and embrace it. It drove me closer to my God, my Lord. God did not force such a time upon me, for Love and force are an oxymoron…and God is Love. He did ‘nudge’ me into it by promising: “You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever” (Psalm 23:5-6). “Therefore, behold, I will allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak comfortably unto her.” Hosea 2:14)
“They spoke against God, saying, ‘Can God spread a table in the desert?’” (Psalm 78:19).
Yes, He can.
“He [John the Baptist] said, ‘I am a voice of one crying in the wilderness, ‘Make straight the way of the Lord.’ as Isaiah the prophet said.'” (John 1:23). The wilderness is a fearful place to be…or can be. Yet, that is where John the Baptist was sent.
‘Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.’ (Mt. 4:1). Paul spent 3 years in the desert wilderness. (See Gal. 1:15-19). Jesus: Luke 5:16 “So He Himself often withdrew into the wilderness and prayed.” The Jews wandered in the desert for 40 years before they entered the Promise Land (Ex. 16). Amos 2:10 Also I brought you up from the land of Egypt, and led you forty years through the wilderness, to possess the land of the Amorite.
“By definition the wilderness is a lonely place. It’s a huge, vast, trackless expanse of desert that seems to go on forever. Walk for a mile in any direction and the terrain looks the same. Climb over a hill and all you see is more of the same. Even though you may actually be surrounded by people, in the wilderness you feel all alone.” (KeepBelieving.com).
So how do we find that oasis in such a lonely and parched land? Where do we find that table God sets for us?
John 7:37 On the last day of the feast, the great day, Jesus stood up and cried out, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink. 38 Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’” 39 Now this he said about the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were to receive, for as yet the Spirit had not been given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.
John 4:10 Jesus answered her, “If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.” 11 “Sir,” the woman said, “you have nothing to draw with and the well is deep. Where can you get this living water? 12 Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did also his sons and his livestock?” 13 Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, 14 but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”
“O, how God must become weary with how often we question his itinerary for our lives. How often we think we know better how to get from here to there! We are so much more prone to grumble with the conductor when the train turns south, than we are to sit patiently and wait for lessons from the Lord. He is a very mysterious guide. We never quite know what is coming next. God would never make it in the travel industry because he is always leading his best clients into the wilderness.” –Piper
“It’s far better to be in the wilderness with Jesus than in a fancy penthouse without him. Life isn’t about your dreams, your agenda, your hopes, your ideas, or your plans. Life is all about God’s dreams, God’s agenda, God’s ideas, and God’s plans. It’s his kingdom we’re praying to come, not ours.” (KeepBelieving.com).
Jesus has invited all to feast with Him at His table, but sadly not all accept His invitation.
Luke 14:15 When one of those who reclined at table with him heard these things, he said to him, “Blessed is everyone who will eat bread in the kingdom of God!” 16 But he said to him, “A man once gave a great banquet and invited many. 17 And at the time for the banquet he sent his servant to say to those who had been invited, ‘Come, for everything is now ready.’ 18 But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said to him, ‘I have bought a field, and I must go out and see it. Please have me excused.’ 19 And another said, ‘I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I go to examine them. Please have me excused.’ 20 And another said, ‘I have married a wife, and therefore I cannot come.’ 21 So the servant came and reported these things to his master. Then the master of the house became angry and said to his servant, ‘Go out quickly to the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in the poor and crippled and blind and lame.’ 22 And the servant said, ‘Sir, what you commanded has been done, and still there is room.’ 23 And the master said to the servant, ‘Go out to the highways and hedges and compel people to come in, that my house may be filled. 24 For I tell you, none of those men who were invited shall taste my banquet.’”
Ez. 34:25 And I will make with them a covenant of peace, and will cause the evil beasts to cease out of the land: and they shall dwell safely in the wilderness, and sleep in the woods.
“Blessed are those servants, whom the Lord when he cometh shall find watching: verily I say unto you, that he shall gird himself, and make them to sit down to meat, and will come forth and serve them” (Luke 12:37).
Rev. 19:9 And the angel said to me, “Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.” And he said to me, “These are the true words of God.”
(((HUGS))) Jude Gibbs, Author of ‘Gifts from the Ashes’ available at:
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