I’ve been to the wilderness enough times that I seem to own a summer home there. Except it’s more of a Sahara shack. It’s definitely not a prestigious home. Why? Because no amount of living in the wilderness is comfortable; I don’t plan on staying any longer than is absolutely necessary.
In the natural, the wilderness is a bleak place deficient of the resources to provide the basic needs of life, rendering one into a state of desolation. The dreariness creeps in emotionally…and spiritually.
My goal is to determine why I’m there, let God have His way, and then make a rapid exit.
Maybe God has allowed this time so I can learn His ways? Perhaps this dry season is preceding a new phase of my calling? Or did I take the Exit to Murmuring and go off the route to the Promised Land like the Israelites?
3 Ways to Respond Like Jesus Did in the Wilderness
Prior to beginning His ministry, “Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil” (Matthew 4:1 ESV). Despite God’s purpose for us in the wilderness season, we might be tempted in the following three ways, too.
Temptation #1: dependence on sustenance
And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. And the tempter came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.” But he answered, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” (Matthew 4:2-4 ESV)
Jesus was hungry from His 40 day fast. I don’t know about you, but I think I would be lying in the fetal position, crying. I like food. Honestly, I need to eat six times a day to avoid becoming weak. Yet the response needs to be:
My nourishment comes from the life-giving Word of God.
Temptation #2: identity questioned/misuse the power of God
Then the devil took him to the holy city and set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down, for it is written, ‘He will command his angels concerning you,’ and ‘On their hands they will bear you up,lest you strike your foot against a stone.’”
Jesus said to him, “Again it is written, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’” Matthew 4:5-7 ESV
Notice the devil repeated Doubt Talk 101 and said, “IF you are the Son of God.” Jesus knew…
Join me over at my friend Julie’s at Unmasking the Mess to read the rest of the post and learn truth about the wilderness every believer needs to know.