Daily Archives: March 26, 2012

Deuteronomy 5, 6, 7; Luke 3

the word of God came to John the son of Zacharias in the wilderness. Luke 3:2b NKJV

I am in a wilderness, feeling isolated from people I know and care about, surrounded by people who don’t speak my language, who live in a different cultural paradigm. I chose this wilderness and entered it willingly in response to the call to ‘go’. But more than that, right now, I am in a wilderness, spiritually, a place we as believers never really desire to be.

As a mother to a one year old and pregnant with baby number two, I have found myself in a place where ‘quiet times’ don’t exist. Reading the Bible has taken new meaning as I can get about one verse completely read before my daughter’s giggle, cry, or stinky diaper interrupts. And at this point, forget about getting up early because sleep is still not even in my nightly vocabulary. I have found that the only place I can be alone is in the bathroom, and that is only if I remember to lock the door and put earplugs in. My prayers happen on the fly and usually are one liners that often contain the phrase: “Help me Holy Ghost!”

When I read these words: the word of God came…in the wilderness, I experience a renewed sense of hope and encouragement. Though it has been a while since I have heard God’s voice loud and clear, and had time to bask in His presence like I have in the past, I do hear that still, soft whisper periodically and I am reminded that I am not alone, not even in my feelings of wilderness.

One of my first encounters with wilderness was as a new believer. The time was so dry. I felt like God was so far away…I couldn’t hear Him, feel Him, sense Him. I trusted that He was there, ever present, because He promised that He would never leave me nor forsake me. And it was pure, new believer faith that caused me to press in even more instead of run away.

Then, my brother died, suddenly, unexpectedly, heartbreakingly.

As I moved through the various stages of grief, the Lord began reminding me of that wilderness time. In the midst, even though my experience of God was different than what I had known before, I began to see that He had still been ministering to me and even preparing me for a tragedy that He already knew was going to happen. My preparation, my wilderness, had given me a strength I never had before and it taught me to lean not on my own understanding, but to fully trust in Him.

The Lord talked with you face to face on the mountain from the midst of the fire. Deuteronomy 5:4 NKJV

Even in the midst of the Israelites’ wilderness, God was there, as a cloud, as fire, as a rumble in the mountains. He provided, nurtured, protected, and made covenant with His chosen. He talked with His people face to face, loved them, and called them a special treasure. And, after a season, He brought them out of the wilderness, into their promised land, just like He will for me.

I am looking forward to my promised land, and in the midst of the wilderness, I will not quit pressing into Him, even if we have to meet in the bathroom.

Yesappa, though the wilderness is never a fun place, it is a place I will choose to be glad to be. Help me to trust you more, to seek you more, even in the midst of the busyness of life and motherhood. Thank you for the grace you give me during wilderness times to survive, learn, and eventually thrive. Thank you for talking with me face to face, for loving me, and calling me your special daughter. Amen.

 

Blessings – Julie, Vadipatti, India

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Filed under 66 Books, Bible in a year reading plan, Deuteronomy, Luke, New Testament, Old Testament