Stuck in the wilderness but NEVER lost!

 

 

 

I am going through a difficult time in my journey as a Christian, not because my faith is wavering, which is not the case at all, but because never before have I felt such a strong conviction of God’s existence and Christ’s sacrifice on the cross to bring me back to the Father, and yet I am at a loss as to how to deploy and act out what I know and have experienced to be true and worthy of a lifetime commitment and dedication.

I find much comfort as I read those passages in the Old Testament which talk about Moses and the people of Israel spending 40 years in the wilderness.  Also in Luke 4 we learn that the Holy Spirit led Jesus into the dessert for 40 days.  Interesting point that in both instances it was God who led both Moses and Jesus into this period of wilderness, uncertainty and testing.  I feel reassured that contrary to some people’s belief, the Holy Spirit can and does sometimes lead us not beside quiet waters, but into circumstances where we are stripped off all our confidence, and even anointing. 

Months ago I was leading a prayer group at my house during which we had some very special times of spiritual healing, encouragement and building each other up through our weekly struggles.  Only a few months before that, I could not even pray out loud when on my own.  And now, a year later although my faith is stronger than ever, as Samson lost his strength when his hair was cut off, so I have been led to a place where that anointing has left me and I find myself craving for the wonderful presence of God’s power in my life which in the past allowed me to experience a reality so much bigger than myself, with so much more meaning and weight.

Paul Weigel in “A journey in the Wilderness” says that when we work at overcoming our outward weakness (symptoms), it only covers up the deeper root areas God is attempting to expose in our Heart.  We may be able to lop off a branch or two of the tree, but the tree is still standing.  When the Holy Spirit does His work, He lays the axe to the root of the problem.  Check this link if you wish to read more of his book – http://www.theforerunner.net/Resources/A_Journey_In_The_Wilderness/bookexcpts.html

In other words, this gift, anointing, supernatural faith I had previously been blessed with from above, no longer seems to be a part of me; is no longer something that defines me and that is imediately perceived by others without me having to work at it for it to be manifested.   Deep in my heart, faith in Jesus Christ and his message of love, forgiveness and salvation is still very much my rock, the foundation that sustains me, but to the outside world, that special something that shined out of me before with no effort, is no longer on display.  The Lord gave and has now taken away.  This is indeed an incredibly humbling time for me and I am in awe of the fact that God blessed me with such sustaining faith in Him in the first place. 

Pictures are always good ways of reflecting one’s heart or mood at any particular given time, so how about this one?

 

Are the cracks starting to show?

 

 

 I have a better one, though:

 

24 (117 kb)

 

I praise God for the cracks that are showing where there once was luscious green pastures in me which people fed on.  I praise God for bringing me back to Him; for reeling me in when I tried to fly before I could walk.  I praise God for the drought, the inability to go forward in the faith in my own ability, but the certainty of my strength being renewed by his grace and power, as I wait on Him for as long as it takes.  I praise the Lord for allowing me to taste a season of spiritual barrenness, so that when His streams of living water run through me once more, I will be all the more grateful for a joy and a blessing I should have never taken for granted or treated with less respect than it deserved.  I praise God, because although it is hard to live through this wilderness at present, spiritually speaking, I know that He can see the end from the beginning and will not put me in a position or call me to a purpose for which I am not yet ready.

As I walk through this wilderness I am only too aware of all the “corpses” and “dried bones” all around me of all those who disobeyed and in looking back, suggested and wondered whether they would have been better off back in Egypt; the dried bones of those fatally wounded, because they stepped beyond their anointing way before their character was refined in the fire enough to withstand the temptations and attacks of the Evil one.  May the Lord keep me in this “desolate land” for as long as He deems necessary, and give me the grace to never look back and long for a time past.

 

His will be done, not mine
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5 thoughts on “Stuck in the wilderness but NEVER lost!

  1. Hi

    I hear where you are coming from. I wish I could give you my framework for understanding God through some direct mystical injection. I can’t do it.

    I am going through a difficult time in my journey as a Christian, not because my faith is wavering, which is not the case at all, but because never before have I felt such a strong conviction of God’s existence and Christ’s sacrifice on the cross to bring me back to the Father, and yet I am at a loss as to how to deploy and act out what I know and have experienced to be true and worthy of a lifetime commitment and dedication.

    God requires holiness and obedience from you. Put in to practice what the bible clearly tells you to do – not all of the bible is prescriptive, some of it is only descriptive. Learn to understand the difference.

    I refer you on to some great teaching that can help you.

    http://desiringgod.org
    http://www.marshillchurch.org/

    Bless you brother/sister

  2. “Ransom33”,

    I want to start out by saying this is coming from my heart. It isn’t “thus says the Lord” it’s just me being real because honestly I’ve felt this same way and I know there’s more to this than the pain and guilt that we seem to find in the wilderness. Pray for me as I try to express what I feel God has just recently allowed me to realize!

    It seems that us who desire to be closer to God find ourselves stuggling most of the time. We take ourselves too serious and beat ourselves up with with burdens of others and the sin in our lives.Why is that? Is it because God wants us pure before He uses us? I’m convinced it is but lately I feel that the level of purity we are striving for may not be the purity that God is after nor is it obtainable in this life. We desire to please God so much yet seem to always fall short. We read the prophecies in the Bible but we don’t know the kind of men these prophets were in day to day life. They lament over the wickedness of the people and give chilling revelation of what is to come yet we don’t take the time to realize they were humans just as we are with the same sinful lives. I feel we picture the prophets as loners who God spoke to because they devoted their lives to the living out the Law but we know that the Law is impossible to live up to.

    The wilderness is a requirement without a doubt. We see that every prophet or great “hero” in the Bible experienced this yet it is only in the life of Jesus that we get a pretty descriptive account of what He had to overcome. In just a few instances we see satan tempt Jesus, get rebuked, and Jesus come off the mountain prepared to enter His ministry. The temptations though are no different than what we go through and He gave us a model on how to overcome. That is keeping your eyes on the Lord, brushing off temptation with the Word of God, andaccomplishing the mission God has for us. A lot easier said than done!

    We don’t see Jesus talk about all the hardships, ugliness of sin, pain to our pride, or even parallel His wilderness to the prophets of old. Why do we do it? I don’t know about you but I have been going around for weeks in a “victorious” yet “defeated Spirit. I have told my wife to pray for me, thanked her for being understanding, yet haven’t had any joy at all. God has been speaking so much to me and I believe we have to become broken but today it hit me that we don’t have to be defeated, frustrated, or insecure in who we are in Christ. By doing this we are still being controlled by the Law and not waling in the victory of the Cross.

    By Jesus taking on the body of us humans, He knows every thought that could ever cross our mind, every reaction out of frustration, and every desire we have in our hearts. I feel we’ll stay in the wilderness until we realize that we don’t have to be there anymore. He wants us to see how sinful we are as well as the world we live in so we can understand His love for us even more. I seriously doubt he wants us to keep taking in all the negative. He wants us to see the light and start walking in it with Him.

    It seems like for the past month or so I have been getting these awesome revelations and then in trying to explain them, becoming so tounge tied that nothing I say makes sense and it ends with me telling someone that “they may not be on the same level I am at the moment therefore they can’t relate to the pain I’m going through”. I have somehow turned this into something that takes me out of my love walk and into a very moody individual. It may just be me but I feel I have been over analyzing this journey instead of living it out. Does that make sense? It’s almost like going hiking but talking about the views, the muscle cramps, the fatigue, and all the nature around me before I have even started. I am just at the bottom of the mountain telling about all the pain and emotions involved instead of just getting up and going, allowing God to speak on the way.

    This is an important aspect of growing closer to God and dying to self but how can we actually die when all we talk about is our current struggles and how we can’t wait to come through. Jesus said to “look up to the sky sky for the fields are white and the harvest is NOW…….yet the laborers are few”. The more I think about these words I think he is telling us to stop putting so much thought into our journey and just get out there and work. He will guide us if we yield. We have realized we are unpure, sinful beings but what glory are we bringing the Kingdom by remaining here in an idle state of unpurity? We’ll NEVER be pure enough that’s why he gave is His Grace.

    Yes we wait on the Lord but I believe it’s an active wait. We live life as usual but our Spirit is more keen to recognize an opportunity to labor thus we wait, not acting on emotions but for our Spirits to be quickened when He needs us to act. I’ll stop now but this came to me today after a HUGE mistake I made by getting too caught up in the sufferings and cleansing the wilderness brings. I feel I was missing the whole point and that is that He wants our motives and hearts pure so we become teachable. Sorry this is long but I feel I can relate to you so much. If not please disregard but if so, you can email me at brandon.medtech@gmail.com. I’d like to get a better feel of who you are so I don’t write novels trying to get a simple point across. Stay strong in the Lord and God bless you!

    In Christ,

    Brandon

  3. Thank you Brandon for the massive encouragement that comes from someone who as far as I can tell, knows exactly what I am experiencing at the moment, and what a desolate place the wilderness can be.

    I agree with everything you say but in agreeing, the pain becomes more acute, because it only makes me even more aware of the predicament I am in, spiritually speaking. Having said that, you have given me perspective back and hope, which I am most grateful for.

    Please never apologise for writing a long comment. When you are helping out a friend or someone in need, time constrainsts cannot come into play, that person’s wellbeing has to be the first priority, so I thank you for taking the time and for sharing part of your own journey.

    God bless you too,

    Your sister in Christ,

    ransom33

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