The kids and I attend a Bible class together on Wednesdays called Bible Study Fellowship (BSF). You can read all about BSF and even find a class near you here. BSF is the highlight of my week. Atlas’ highlight of the week is the doughnut we get after BSF. And let’s be honest – that’s also another highlight for me.
BSF spends a whole year studying one book of the Bible and this year the study is on Revelation. I was actually hesitant to study Revelation because it sounded terrifying and I wasn’t sure how much I would get out of it, but I’m so glad I decided to do the study because it is changing my life, as only God’s word can do.
Anyways, I just felt led to share something that I read last week in my BSF notes that really encouraged my heart. The study was from Revelation 12 where John has a vision of a woman about to give birth to a son, but a dragon is waiting to devour the baby (FYI, this chapter of the Bible doesn’t make for a good bedtime story to read with your child). In this particular vision, God protects the child by snatching it up to Heaven as soon as the child is born and then God sends the woman into the wilderness for shelter so the dragon cannot harm her.
This was written in my BSF notes…
“Why did God send the woman to a wilderness? God often protects His people by leading them into situations of lesser comfort but greater dependence on Himself. Are you in an uncomfortable place you would not choose? Would you rather have a different spouse, live in a different city or pursue a different career? God’s protection surrounds His people; His wise and good purpose can be trusted. What seems like a wilderness to you may be your place of greatest safety.”
I couldn’t help but think of Moses and the Israelites in the wilderness and how God used that wilderness as a place of protection for His people and also as a place to display His power and glory, through the parting of the Red Sea and sending manna from Heaven.
But just like the Israelites did, we often grumble in the wilderness. Or, at least I do. This is what I tend to look like when traveling through a wilderness…
Because it is uncomfortable. But what if we shifted our perspective next time we found ourselves in the desert and viewed it as the place God prepared for us? How much would that change our attitudes?
As I think of the different ‘wildernesses’ I’ve traveled through in my own life, I realize they were places prepared for me by God. Places that ended up leading me to something greater or places that simply gave me more of Jesus. I’m learning that even as I walk through wildernesses today, they aren’t as dry and barren as I always believed because when I look to the right source, there are always streams of water and manna to be found.
Maybe you’re reading this from your own wilderness. I hope this encourages you to lean a little closer into Jesus while you’re in that uncomfortable or painful place. Trust that He is faithful and His plan is a good one.