Road to (through) a Desert

I know, Lord, that our lives are not our own. We are not able to plan our own course. So correct me, Lord, but please be gentle. Do not correct me in anger, for I would die.

Jeremiah 10:23-24

During this last year, I have been walking a road of faith, seeing the Lord show up in ways that I had never dreamed were possible. The times I questioned Him and what He was doing, He revealed Himself to me; He confirmed that I was with Him and He with me.

What started out as a weak journey of faith filled with questioning transformed into a vision that produced great hope within the depths of my soul. I learned what faithfulness in the face of impossible circumstances looked like. A faithful heart had been cultivated within me, and I am sure that it had not been a work of my own.

As I continued along this path of faith, I hit a bump in the road through which God knelt down and demonstrated something to me that I wouldn’t trade. He revealed to me that I was a new creation; that everything Christ had done had not been done in vain. What I thought about myself and what I heard about myself from others meant nothing in the light of all that Christ had accomplished on the cross. That overused 2 Corinthians 5:17 suddenly  took on a new meaning and truly started taking root in my heart.

What I thought had been a small bump in the road, however, turned out to be a harbinger that the road I traveled was breaking down. What had been a beautiful, scenic highway crumbled, broke apart, and shattered into an barren wasteland. All of this happened so suddenly — a car wreck. I had gone from walking with a clear vision to suddenly feeling as though I had been chasing a mirage and had actually been in a desert all along.

The days turned into weeks, and I found myself completely unable to discern what had happened — how everything had gone from brilliantly clear to devastatingly muddled. As I had been walking along on a journey of faith, things started to come together to the point that it seemed like the long road was approaching its destination. Then, I found myself surrounded by desert. I kept finding hints and clues like this one that encourage me — tell me to not get so down. What I have experienced has not been new.

After being confirmed as God’s Son, Christ found Himself in the desert to be tempted. After the miracle at the Red Sea, Moses found himself and his people wandering through the desert. Abraham had been given the promise of his son Isaac when he had to walk with the heavy burden of a call to sacrifice that son.

This life that I lead is not my own; it has never been about my pleasure. Instead, the song has been about His glory. The journey is not over though I have arrived in a desert. I have not been left despite all indications. I am here to learn a new lesson. A foundation has been laid, and the structure will not look like what I had envisioned at the start.

Nevertheless, a structure will be built.

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