Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Preparation Ground

     The moment we are born we are in the process of dying, life is the journey between it.   Life is a journey whether good or bad, it’s has tremendous opportunities to learn from.  Some lessons are repeated because we are too stubborn to either repent or change.  So, instead of getting to the destination, we are planted firmly in the desert.  Nevertheless, the desert has a beautiful purpose, its preparation ground.   

     Besides being dry, covered with sand, and extremely hot the desert has purpose.  The desert causes us to crave water; it makes us to die to ourselves, and prepares us for the Lord’s purpose.  The journey to the Promise Land wasn’t a delay in God’s Word; it was Israel learning to rely upon it.  Whether it was the water from the rock, manna from Heaven, or walking with God’s presence (Pillar of Fire at night/Cloud by Day) Israel had to learn to trust God.  Although Israel made some terrible choices, God remained faithful to His people.  God never departed from them; He walked with them to the Promised Land.  Deuteronomy 29:5 "During the forty years that I led you through the desert, your clothes did not wear out, nor did the sandals on your feet." Some lessons are easily learned, others we have to be cracked over the head.  Pride and stubbornness truly caused major delays in Israel getting their promise.  It doesn’t mean God never corrected them, He did. 

     On the other hand, the desert doesn’t mean it has to do with being corrected.  According to the Word, the Spirit led Christ into the desert.   In the desert, Christ was tempted by the enemy.  (Matthew 4:1-11) Satan came to entice Christ to sin, forsake His purpose, and His mission.  Yet, Christ overcome it all, His faith stood the test, so we could overcome whatever obstacle Satan throws.  So the desert will prepare us for the work of the Lord.  After Christ was tempted, He was able start His public ministry.  So, if you are in the desert, allow the Spirit to empower you, draw you closer, and prepare your heart. The desert is only preparation ground, so wait on Him. Don't get impatient!
     Our faith will be tested; we will go through the fire.  Yet, we will not be burned.  As the three Hebrew men stood in the fiery furnace, a fourth man stood in their midst.  All of the Hebrew men came out of it unharmed, without smelling like fire, and victorious over their enemy. 

Daniel 3:26-27, "Nebuchadnezzar then approached the opening of the blazing furnance and shourted, "Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, servants of the Most High God, come out! Come out!  So Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego came out of the fire, and the satraps, prefects, governors and royal advisers crowded around them.  They saw tht the fire had not harmed their bodies, nor was a hair of their heads singed; their robes were not scrorched, and there was no smell of fire on them."
       The desert must cause us to hunger for the water, the living water.  It’s only through the desert; we learn who our source-Jesus is.  We will never be led anywhere without the Spirit, He is our comforter.  Yet, we must learn to come to the end of ourselves, so Christ can shine.  So, don’t be upset about the desert, realize you are being prepared for God’s purpose.  It’s just time to become an empty vessel, He can fill.