Why I Love The Desert

I love flowers. I am no gardener and doubt I ever will be, but I love to look at the beauty of a flower. My daughter and I went on a walk this morning and took some pictures. We discovered a lot of color! The desert is in full bloom right now. There is much more to behold in the desert than just sand and dust. In fact, there is a large variety of plants that are native to dry, sunny climates. I have loved discovering that about the desert these past five years. I like to think that flowers that bloom out here where it's dry and hot are tough little flowers. They've learned how to survive the elements and they do it with grace and beauty.

Deserts are often referred to as wandering wastelands and I know that has been true before...

but much can come from a desert place. 

 It is in a desert that God's kids wandered for forty years. Yes, this was a consequence of their choices, but they also saw the miraculous hand of God every single morning when they went outside their tents and found the manna from Heaven.

Israel learned, in the desert, that God is the provider. 

It was in the desert that Joshua learned what the voice of God sounds like, what faith really looks like, so he could lead the next generation into God's promised land.

It was in the desert that pride was diminished and humility found it's rightful throne in the hearts of those who would see that lush, fertile promised land.

Can I boldly say that desert wanderings are necessary for all of us? It isn't until our souls are parched and dry from thirst that we finally discover our need for the living water of Jesus. It isn't until we wander in the desert that we discover how completely helpless we are to provide for ourselves. It is in the desert wandering that we discover what we really need, what really matters...and what doesn't.

The desert represents the searching....

I wonder, are you searching? Are you wandering in the desert right now, tired, hungry and so, so thirsty? Keep searching friend. The searching will lead you to the most glorious oasis. The searching will lead you to a promised land, one God has laid out for you and is waiting to give you.

Beauty does come from the desert. It's not the kind of beauty though, that fades quickly or can't withstand the harsh elements. It's the kind of beauty that has learned to brave the environment. It's the kind of beauty that knows just what it needs and doesn't take more than it needs.

This week we focus on the agony of Jesus' passion for humanity. If you find yourself in a desert, searching and wandering, let  this week be the moment you find an oasis in your desert.

The cross stands tall and strong, no matter what place you find yourself in life. Let the cross be the shade you need from that dry, hot land you are in. Let the cross be the place you stop for rest in your wandering. And, while you wander, searching for the answers, the healing, keep the cross in your line of sight. Don't stray far from it, stay close enough that you can rest in it's shadow when you need too. Your wandering will lead you to a promised land. You will see the beauty born from trial, suffering and wandering.

You will see the beauty of the desert...

"I will turn the desert into pools of water, and the parched ground into springs. I will put in the desert the cedar and the acacia, the myrtle and the olive. I will set pines in the wasteland, the fir and the cypress together, so that the people may see and know, may consider and understand, that the hand of the Lord has done this..." Isaiah 41:18-20


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