As I was driving to our weekly ladies bible study Tuesday, I started to think about the various stages a believer can go through if we are not careful; sadly, one of the most destructive is wallowing in the wilderness. I am not talking about walking in the wilderness obtaining a closer relationship with God, no, I am talking about choosing to stay in a dry, barren, thirsty, lethargic, bitter and desolate place. There will come a time in our walk with God that we enter the wilderness, as Jesus did, but, this will be a time for our souls to be completely surrendered and immersed in the presence of God. However, when the time comes to leave the dry and barren place sadly, some will choose to stay so the question is; are you wallowing in the wilderness?
On a recent trip to the U.K. we drove past a huge pig farm and I saw (first hand) the pigs wallowing in the muck, they were wallowing in the dirt, mud, old food and yes their own excrement. Before you click away from the page it does get better, I just wanted to illustrate the wallowing of something. So, how do I equate this with wallowing in the wilderness and also, why would we choose a state like that? Wallowing means to roll lazily, to become or remain helpless, to wither and fade or to become self-pitying. Therefore, when we choose to stay/wallow in the wilderness we are choosing to roll in self-pity becoming helpless and withering in our walk with God. This state is not something a person chooses purposely, but it can be a gradual fade due to circumstances or situations that have entered a believer’s heart and mind. This can be anything from an outside offense (lies, gossip, and hatefulness) to a loss (personal, job, or finances). This is usually when a person starts to pull away from the very ones that can help, and enter their own wilderness which is a very lonely place; not only pulling away from the people who love them but also pulling away from God. However, there is always hope and there is always a way back as Jesus has already laid the path and lit the way for His child who is wallowing in the wilderness.
I know there can and will be situations that could just overcome us and I am not trying to belittle the hurts that have happened. However, I want to help you understand that there is hope as Jesus has already overcome all the pains, all the hurts and all the things of this world. John 16:33 says “I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.]” (Amplified translation). Situations will come and people will try to hurt us; however, if we hold onto Jesus and His word there is nothing that can and will overcome us and there is nothing that can take away the love Christ has for His children. When I was in the wilderness feeling sorry for myself due to lies that had been told about me and the gossip that this brought, I never let go of the hope I had in God. One day while at a ladies conference He spoke these words to me “In a dry and weary land You bring life unto these bones, In a dry and weary land Your breath flows through our souls, In this dry and weary land Our hearts are restored, In this dry and weary land Your Glory will shine forth. We worship You, We glorify You, We magnify Your Name, You are Lord the Kind of Kings, removing all our shame. My Abba Father, The One Who cleans us, The One Who loves us, The One Who heals us, None but You, Jesus. None but You, Jesus.” Personalize this to your own situation, He will bring life back to your bones, His breath will flow through your soul and your heart will be restored and the glory of God will shine upon you.
God said in Hebrews 13:5 that He will never leave us nor forsake us, He will not in any way fail us nor give up on us nor leave us without support: it is time to rise up, seek God and get involved, take it one step at a time. Today if you are feeling lonely or helpless in the kingdom of God, let not your heart be troubled and take comfort in knowing that Jesus will guide you out of the wilderness into His fruitful land. It is time to awake and arise as the glory of God shines upon you as He has a will and purpose for each day and every stage of your life. Get involved with your local church – this can be anything from volunteering to be a greeter, to helping behind the scenes, to hosting a prayer meeting of even a small bible study. Seek out people who will prayer with you, someone you can confide in, but remember in the interim period deepen your relationship with God as He is the best friend you will ever have. If you have not read your bible in a while today is the day, if you have not spoke to God in a while today is the day, it is time for you to leave the wilderness and strengthen you walk with Christ.
Call on Jesus – He is right there, you are not alone; He is just waiting for you with His arms wide open. When the righteous cry for help, the LORD hears and delivers them out of all their troubles. The LORD is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit. Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the LORD delivers him out of them all. (Psalm 34:17-19).
Choose this day while we can still call it today and if you do not know Christ then speak out loud the name of Jesus, for today is the day of your salvation.