AND NOW FOR A FEW THOUGHTS ABOUT THE WILDERNESS
It has been my personal experience that the wilderness is the greatest place to gain a rich and deep understanding in regard to hearing the voice of the Father!
Jesus is mentioned in several books of the bible as going out to a “lonely place” or a wilderness area, away from the crowds. He went to “be with his Father.
Mark 1:35: “and in the early morning, while it was still dark, he arose and went out and departed to a lonely place, and was praying there.” Mark 6:31: “ and he said to them, ‘come away by yourselves to a lonely place and rest a while.’ (for there were many people coming and going, and they did not even have time to eat.”
My view of the wilderness is one that embraces the time that the Lord seems to “shut me in with just his voice;” no other distractions. My flesh used to think this was some sort of punishment. I also thought that it would make me a more appropriate ministry vessel if I “took my medicine well” and suffered in the wilderness!
We can bring on a self-imposed “ wilderness...away from the presence of god,” but this is honestly just our own insecurity getting impatient with the speed in which he is moving along in our lives, our marriages and so on. So! We choose to just sit it out in a stubborn attitude with our ears filled with cotton and act like we are really suffering for Jesus!
We can also over-spiritualize this wilderness thing, and make it a badge of really heavy, “I’ve been in the wilderness – and now I am coming out with something really spectacular that’s going to change the world and folks will notice a difference in me”... attitude! The problem with that concept is that it still brings attention to the individual, and not all glory to the Lord.
The wilderness is a place of rich communion and private time with the Father.
It is the secret place of the Most High. Few want to venture out there too often, because it might take a while to settle into a lifestyle of wilderness hunger, silence, and listening. But, it’s in the wilderness that we learn to overcome the taunting and mocking voices assigned to get us to be paranoid and, which try to get us to doubt that God might want the wilderness to be a place of refuge!
I looked up in a thesaurus the word "wilderness," and it lead into a powerful chain of extremely enlightening terms! Much different than what we sometimes might want to think the wilderness is. Here they are:
The wilderness is actually a place of honor for the person that God is preparing to use and speak through. Yes! It can be a lonely place where there are not a lot of advisors or human voices to aid in comfort or in chitchat! But. The warmth of the presence of God, as the soul gets quiet and stops fearing judgment, is so delicious and fulfilling! Suddenly, we want to deal with any character flaws in the safe shield of the Lord! We have no fear of ridicule or shame, because he is our oasis to drink from and to be cleansed from!
Never be in too big of a hurry to get out of the wilderness. Visit it often! We cannot get our spiritual insights by just gleaning off of what other folks might be teaching. The flesh will scream to you to "keep it safe! Go with the flow of the current trends!!" We must be able to walk in wilderness peace when confronted with the pressure of arrows of deceit and competition that will hit us if we choose to be peculiar and pure vessels.
The wilderness it where I love to be. I have learned to embrace it, because it has driven me to a place of loving to be alone with the Father, to sit and worship Him. To hear His passionate voice validate me as His child. It causes me to lean on Him alone for my strength and purpose.
As you enter the wilderness, you will find out that it’s place of refuge where the enemy cannot accuse or press in on you! You will come out of the wilderness, refreshed in the Power of the Spirit!
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Amen! Thank you so much for sharing your insight.