“Let us acknowledge the Lord;let us press on to acknowledge him.As surely as the sun rises,he will appear;he will come to us like the winter rains,like the spring rains that water the earth.”Hosea 6:3
Great movements of water forked out over the desert just in time for the tired and thirsty animals arriving for their yearly reprieve from draught and dust. Watching the Kalahari desert flood and life begin to flourish on BBC’s Planet Earth is truly breathtaking. As with so many desert stories, it began with animals trying to find their way back to their life source and ends with them joyfully paddling through flooded land green with vitality. It was a place the veteran’s knew would be there in just the right season. They could survive the desert journey because of the promise of what was on the other side.
Jesus could survive temptation and wilderness because he knew what was on the other side. On the other side of the wilderness he would begin to heal the sick, bring forgiveness into people’s lives, give dignity to those that society deemed undignified. He knew that he would be betrayed and killed, taking everything that we do that doesn’t look like God’s home and died with it so that we wouldn’t have to. He knew that death wouldn’t keep him and he would live. At end of the wilderness, the devil left him alone …
“When the devil had finished all this tempting, he left him until an opportune time.” ~ Luke 4:13
I crave those things – streets where people feel like the burdens of their lives are lifted right off them, where unworthiness falls away like a snake shedding skin and a life lived from love is revealed underneath. I want to do what Jesus did … heal the sick, bring forgiveness into people’s lives, give dignity to those that society deems undignified. I want to live in God’s home where love is unquestioned. This life is on the other side of temptation. More than anything else, the temptation to not believe that God loves us, that his truth makes us into more loving people and that he knows the way to heal the streets of our cities. If this is your first time taking this journey, make sure you follow someone who is a witness to these things.
When the devil finishes all his tempting, he leaves until an opportune time. Don’t give up in the wilderness and temptation. There will be relief.
This week we will be looking at resting in God’s presence. In the meantime, ask God to give you strength to trust his truth today.