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The Desert

Updated: Mar 24, 2020

Judean Desert

I was told recently by a friend that I am a high-risk person for the virus that is going around. At first this didn’t really bother me, because I already knew that (I am a senior citizen and have asthma). But as I sat in the living room later, I had an overwhelming sense of loneliness and a chill because I would not be able to interact with all my friends like I usually do – keeping 6 feet… This bothered me all morning until I viewed my next lesson for the Bible study I am doing. (The Path to The Cross by Ray VanderLaan.)

The first lesson of the study was on the Essenes and their decisions to leave their lives to go into the desert and live. My major take-away from that lesson was: They found strength of spirit through intense devotion to the Lord and His word in the desert.

The second lesson is on John the Baptist and my major take-away from it was: The Biblical land is a picture of life with God – it was never supposed to be easy. In the Judean desert there is no where you go that is an easy hike, it is always a hill! God hasn’t told us to expect this kingdom life we are to be part of to be easy.

Then I thought back again to my earlier reaction and realized that I am never alone – my God is always with me. With this I felt a definite relief and warmth because I knew He had His arms around me.

Jesus went into the desert to prepare for His ministry; John the Baptist spent a lot of time living in the desert; the Essenes read, studied, discussed, and lived the Torah in the desert; our desert today is to be isolated from a virus. None of the people I just mentioned are alone, God is with each of them/us all the time. As Psalm 139:8 says: “If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.”

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