This gallery contains 1 photo.
I know, I know. It has been almost an eternity (especially in “internet” years) since I have posted on the blog. To be honest, I had to take a sabbatical from some aspects of my life and the one of … Continue reading
So a friend of mine posted a statement on twitter today that really got me thinking. He wrote, “Disbelief leads to the wilderness.” At first glance it makes sense. It sounds right. The wilderness, that place of isolation, could only come as a consequence of disbelief. Right?
I started to recount the famous wilderness stories in Scripture by running them quickly through my mind. Two of those stories stuck out: Israel’s time in the wilderness and Jesus’ wilderness testing. Both stories don’t seem to jive with wilderness being the consequence of disbelief. Israel found itself traveling through the wilderness (with God) because of the nation’s belief in God. They went from Egypt to the wilderness (where God was providing them with what they needed) as they headed to the land God promised. Their initial venture into the wilderness came from their belief in Yahweh, but their stay in the wilderness was lengthened because of their rebellion and disbelief. The wilderness was a place of testing belief. That continues in the wilderness testing of Jesus, it didn’t come from disbelief but was a place of testing.
How often do we find ourselves in the wilderness and think it is because we didn’t believe right or we have doubts and disbelief? How often when things go wrong do we think it is because we didn’t believe right or it is because of disbelief?
The wilderness has become a place where the lost are instead of a place of the faithful. The wilderness becomes a curse rather than a gift. Instead of a place of testing, the wilderness has become a place of punishment.
To me the wilderness is that place where the faithful go to prepare for true glory. Israel was taken through the wilderness to see if they were ready for the glory of the promised land. Jesus was tested in the same way to show the way. The wilderness wasn’t a place of punishment, it was a place of testing. It was a place where beliefs were tested, not a place where one was taken to see the need for belief or to come to the realization of one’s own disbelief.
How often do followers of Christ start to doubt who they are in Christ because they find themselves in the wilderness as ask “What did I get wrong?” instead of “How will my beliefs help me in this time of isolation?” Can we see the wilderness as a gift? Is it a gift, or am I just wrong?