The wilderness of the soul

By Dave Henning / November 21, 2014

“Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the desert, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil.’- Luke 4:1-2

Max Lucado begins Chapter 16 (“The Long, Lonely Winter- Wilderness Places”) of Next Door Savior with this description of the wilderness of the soul:

“The wilderness of the soul.  Parched promises.  Sharp words.  Shifting commitments.  Burning anger. Rejections that cut.  Miraging hope.  Distant solutions ever beyond reach.  This is the wilderness of the soul.”

Pastor Lucado notes that while some of us know a geographical desert wilderness, all of us know a wilderness of the soul.  Wilderness wanderings, he adds, often are the result of transitions.  The author lists three indications that we’re in such a wilderness:

1.  We are lonely.  Whether that loneliness is based on fact or feeling, we’re convinced no one can help, understand, or rescue us.

2.  Our struggle seems endless.  Max poignantly describes this stage: “The calendar is stuck in February, and you’re stuck in South Dakota, and you can’t even remember what spring smells like.”

3.  We think the unthinkable.  The wilderness weakens our resolve.  Pastor Lucado states that temptation carries and entices us.  What we would have believed unimaginable prior to our wilderness experience becomes all too possible in it.

Today’s question: Which wilderness indicator resonates most with you?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “The Second Adam”

About the author

Dave Henning

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