Decisions in the Desert
The desert is entered when I flee bondage, hatred or malevolence. Instantly the desert becomes the place where I am forced to make new decisions, it is a foreign (but safe) land.
I may have been in slavery (Egypt) prior to fleeing, but the slavery was familiar (almost comfortable) - it was the place of my childhood education and my first home. Egypt is where I became an adult and learned to sin.
The very nature, the divine purpose of a desert sojourn is to strip away the scaffolds of life. The previous comfort, wages, relationships, careers and egos are demolished in the desert. Only a few possessions can be carried over its scorching sands.
From the trek through this barren land I am confronted with choices I could never have known; decisions about my heart, dependence, righteousness, faithfulness and true value. These questions cause me to audit my soul.
For those who would trek the sand driven and solitary paths that criss-cross the weary soul, the desert becomes the simple offer of life or death, faithfulness or faithlessness, righteousness or sin.
The desert then becomes the mother to worship, where true worship is born and nurtured.
So Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and said to him, ‘This is what the Lord, the God of the Hebrews, says: “How long will you refuse to humble yourself before me? Let my people go, so that they may worship me. (Exodus 10:3)
Rejoice in the desert sojourn, for such a trek to new spiritual growth was impossible until all of life's scaffolds had fallen away.
The desert is a terribly difficult place, but I must remember when I was in Egypt it was far worse.
The desert is the sand-blasting, sin-curing wander to safe freedom.
Egypt is not to be gazed upon again.
But the desert is never enough, any more than it is an end in itself; Canaan always awaits the faithful.
Today's Soul Snippet:
"In solitude I get rid of my scaffolding." ~ Henri Nouwen
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