The wilderness doesn't always look the way you think it will.
Sometimes it is completely obvious... you see it over THE horizon and you know, yep. It's coming. you steel yourself and walk right in to the necessary. Other times the wilderness arrives at your doorstep. BAM. And you're in. Most often, however, the Days of Desert come slowly. You're walking along in life minding your own business and one grain of sand at a time, the desert Takes up residence in your heart. One Day you Wake up and you rub your bone dry eyes and realize, you're in the middle of the desert and you don't remember the path that brought you There.
I wonder if the children of israel felt that way? Even in their complaining, do you think as they wandered they asked themselves in private moments 'How did we get here - really? How did we get to the place where we were so excited to be liberated and now we can't stop complaining?' Had they not seen God be faithful? Had they not sensed his rescue? Had they not experienced miracles?
Are they not so different from us?
We are liberated from our own egypts and within ear shot of the oppression, we are complaining in the desert, wandering in the wilderness unaware of how the journey unfolded. We find ourselves trying to be the provider - trying to fix all the things - instead of operating in a sober reliance on the one who Actually brought us there.
Be very clear. He hasn't left us, he's leading us there.
The Wilderness is God's Classroom. There is always discipline in the dust.
The hebrew name for the book of numbers is "in the Wilderness". It's full of specifics of how things should be ordered and life should happen but also a story of how things go awry. ultimately, it's also a tale of you and me. an aptly named story of the history that still encamps in our veins: The discounted details and the slow Drift. Over and OVer.
Don't DESPISE the Desert. He's guiding us in - sometimes quite abruptly for our own good. And although it feels like a whirlwind of wander, there is oasis and a way out at the end. Every time.
Rushing the journey cheats us of being able to carry the Earth with us on our feet as we journey to the high places - Dust we will want to remember as a monument to the Moment he took us in.....
....and When he brought us out.
Tara is Greg's girl, mom to two sons of thunder, a hunger fighter, big dreamer and worship pastor at seacoast church.