I know that I'm a day late for Tuesday's In Other Words, but I made it! Actually Monday was a holiday here in the UK, so in essence yesterday was Monday and today is Tuesday. At least that it how it feels since yesterday I was doing all of Monday's chores in addition to trying to cram 5 days of school planning into a 4 day week. That's my excuse and I'm sticking to it!
Therefore I am now going to allure her; I will lead her into the desert and speak tenderly to her. Hosea 2:14
For a long time I missed the point of the desert place in terms of spiritual growth. I thought that it was a place that I had landed myself in due to sin and rebellion and thus saw the desert as a negative, punitive state. True, there are spiritual droughts that come as a result of sin. But I am beginning to learn that those are different from the desert.
The desert is a place where God draws us to be alone with Him. It is a place of no distraction. A place of focus. And, although a desert place can be very difficult to traverse, it is not a place of punishment. God says to Hosea he will "allure" and "lead" his people. Those are not words of punishment, but of tenderness.
Matthew 4:1 tells us:
"Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the desert."
Before Jesus encountered the tempter, however, he had 40 days of fasting and praying. In other words, he had time of communion with His Father, then the lesson time came. I think the same is true for us. When God leads us into a desert place He wants us to spend time with Him. Yes, the lessons come, but the worship time is sweet.
I no longer look at the desert as a negative. I find the joy that if God is calling me to it, then He is there with me. And there is a definite allure to that!
Father, help me to seek the beauty in the desert when you call me to come. Help me not to see the barren land, but he life you give. I want to follow your leading. In the name of the One who sustains me in the desert, Jesus, Amen.
Heather at Titus 2 Woman is the hostess for this week's In Other Words. I am sure you will be blessed by what others have written.