The desert is defined as a region so arid because of little rainfall, that it supports only sparse and widely spaced vegetation or no vegetation at all. It is an uncomfortable place and certainly not something we ask for in prayer.
We often call it a dry and lonely place. It can appear to be a lifeless, inconvenient pit stop on our journey. It’s usually where we complain the most and feel stuck.
Have you ever been in a dry place in your life?
Did you feel abandoned by God and people? Did you curse it?
Luke 1:80 (NKJV) states: “So the child grew and became strong in spirit, and was in the deserts till the day of his manifestation to Israel.” This scripture contradicts what we normally feel about desert places.
John the Baptist grew and became strong in spirit while in the desert. He wasn’t hiding, he was being prepared. It was part of the training and growth required for him to complete his assignment.
I was taken aback and felt strongly convicted when I read this verse. I‘ve heard many sermons about his experience in the wilderness, but this time was different. I began to think about how I’ve acted in my own dry places and gained clarity about why some things have to be repeated in my life.
There will be desert places in our lives, but it’s what we do while going through it that will determine how we come out of it.
This is not an easy to place to be, no matter who you are. No one wakes up and proclaims, “I’m so happy to be in my desert.” It just doesn’t happen!
It is only a lifeless place when you look at it through your own eyes.
It doesn’t make sense, when we refuse to see God’s purpose for it.
We lose appreciation for it when we don’t recognize God’s hand in it.
This is a place of meditation, reflection, and growth. There is nothing to drink except the living water, which is the word of God. There is nothing to eat, except the Bread of Life. We should be growing in the Spirit.
We should receive a filling of the Spirit, so people are unaware that we are in a dry place. Not to put on a façade, but to show how God can work in our lives under any circumstances.
What do you do while in the desert?
Get closer to Him. Press into Him more. Seek Him more. Praise Him more. Worship Him more.
Don’t focus on being in the desert so much that you miss God while you’re there.
It’s only temporary!
Father, I thank You for my desert times. Help me to grow while I’m in the desert. Help me to keep my eyes on You at all times, so I don’t miss anything that You have for me. In Jesus’ name, amen!
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