Wilderness

photo of trees during daytime
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I love the outdoors and nature, but I do not like camping!

Our family went camping once! My husband and son said, “Come on! It will be fun! There’s nothing better than food cooked out over a campfire!”

We borrowed my brother-in-law’s tent, packed the ice chests, and lots of bags full of food, paper goods, and cooking supplies, grabbed Grandma, and drove to Arkansas to camp for the weekend.

The first night it rained, and we awoke to a stream of water flowing through our tent!  I guess my brother-in-law forgot to tell us it leaked!

The family said, “Well, that’s that. Let’s pack up and go home.”

“What, go home? I don’t think so. We came to camp!”

“But, it’s raining, and by the looks of things, it’s not going to stop!”

“Find me an umbrella because we’re going to eat food cooked out over a campfire. I’ve heard there’s nothing like it!”

We did pack up camp, but only after the family held the umbrella over my head while I cooked, and I must confess, it was delicious!

What started out being a wet and messy outing turned out being one of our most memorable weekends, and we still laugh about it to this day.

Wilderness

Cloud by day
Fire by night
Follow His way
Walk in the Light
When the Light stops
It’s time to stop, too
He’s providing a place
Of complete rest for you.

My camping trip lasted 24 hours.  I cannot imagine leaving Egypt to go on a 40-year camping trip in the wilderness,  but I do know what it’s like to have a “wilderness experience.”

If you’ve ever been in a “wilderness experience,” you know what I’m talking about.  It’s a tough time full of trials and God-ordained testing.

When I’m in the wilderness, I want out of it as soon as possible.  Everything in me screams, “I don’t like this!”  No matter how many times I ask God to come to get me, I know He’s not going to until it is time.

I want to move through each trial as quickly as possible.  Let’s keep moving.  No camping for me, but that’s not how it works, so we camp.  Who knows for how long?

There are several biblical examples of people enduring a “wilderness experience.”

The length of time is different for everyone. It might be a day, week, months, or years.  I don’t know, but I do know you move when God says to move, and you camp when He says to camp.

I would much rather move through the wilderness as quickly as possible.  Resting feels like a waste of time, but it really isn’t.  While God is testing our faith, He is building in times of rest so that we can endure.  Mercy & Grace at it’s best!

The same God who created the garden also created the wilderness. The God of grace meets us in the wilderness. Missionary Amy Carmichael knew this truth: “Bare heights of loneliness . . . a wilderness whose burning winds sweep over glowing sands, what are they to HIM? Even there He can refresh us, even there He can renew us.”

God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation.  Afterward, they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love Him.  James 1:12

19 thoughts on “Wilderness

  1. I am so on the same page with you regarding camping. I do not like it at all but my hubby and son enjoy it.

    I never looked at the 40 years in the desert as camping. I would like to move through and get out of the wilderness as quickly as possible too.
    And yes he gives us rest during those time so that we can endure.
    Great post, enjoyed it. 💙

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Thanks Deborah. The wilderness seasons are not easy. But I know it’s important to be obedient in the wilderness, so we don’t have to stay 40 years like the Israelites!

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  3. Our wilderness experiences can be messy and tough, but I know I’ve learned some wonderful lessons in those times. I love how you pointed out that God keeps us there as long as needed and He’s with us every step. A good word for today! Thank you!

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  4. Great story and parallel with the children of Israel’s wilderness experience and yours! I am also with you, I hate camping but there are lessons to be learned in our experiences, especially our wilderness experiences.

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  5. No camping for me, either! Yuck! I love how you tied that into being in the wilderness. I don’t want to be in the wilderness any longer than I have to. Praise God that He’s with us the whole time and gets us through when He knows we’re ready.

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