Reading: Psalm 63: 1-8
The desert or wilderness is a common location in the Bible. A sinful Adam and Eve were sent out into the wilderness. The Israelites wander in the desert for forty years, constantly testing God and then repenting. It was in the wilderness that John baptized and that Jesus was tempted. At times in our lives we too find ourselves in the desert.
In the psalmist today, David experiences the desert as a dry and weary land. It is tough to survive in the desert; we are tested in that struggle to survive. In those dry seasons in the desert or out in the harsh wilderness, we feel tested and we often long for relief. For David, the physical thirst in the desert reminded him of his spiritual thirst for God. Our times in the desert reminded us too of our need for God. In verses 2-8 we read over and over of David’s singing to and glorifying God for His power, love, provision, and strength. In our dry seasons we too can experience these blessings of God. He longs to pour them out upon us as well.
Lent is a time when we remember Jesus’ forty days in the wilderness. Lent invites us to join Jesus there as well. In the desert we can more clearly see the temptations we are facing. In the desert we can come to rely more on God in those battles.
The desert can be a beautiful place as well. In the stillness of the desert we can more easily hear His voice. In the vast, wide open expanse we can more easily experience His majesty. In the dark night sky we can see the splendor and might of His creation.
Maybe we find ourselves in the desert for an unpleasant reason. If so, allow that deep need for God to be honestly felt and then joyously welcome Him in. If our time in the desert is by choice, revel in God’s power, might, and presence. Step into the desert, embrace it. In a space with just you and God, draw close to Him. Be blessed.