What the wilderness teaches us

The men’s Bible study I am a part of at my church is going through the Gospel of Matthew. We’re just getting started so I was reflecting on Matthew 3 this week. John the Baptist comes along and Matthew identifies him as the one crying out in the wilderness.

As we were discussing this Isaiah passage where Matthew draws from to identify John, I thought about the use of the wilderness throughout Scripture. Read more

Holy Spirit Proving Grounds

The Spirit led Jesus into the wilderness to be tested by the devil.  (Matt. 4:1-11)

There are places where the Spirit will lead us to test our character. Even if the event seems intense, it’s a “controlled environment.”

We miss those proving ground tests all too often in our own lives. We have weak theologies that don’t believe in a devil, or don’t believe in a hard life, or don’t believe in not finding the closest parking spot to the store door…

We hit those testing grounds, we whine, we cry, and we want Jesus to “take us home.”

Many moments are lost in our lives because we don’t give pause to what is going on in reality and we just quit.

The wilderness is not just a place of abandonment. It may be exactly where the Spirit has brought you.

Next time… ask.

Not All Valleys are “of the Devil”

Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. (Matt. 4:1)

Not every trial, not every test, can be blamed on the devil. The Lord can put us in tough situations to bring testing, to put fire to our faith… to forge the steel of faith in our lives.

It is never comfortable, but when the Lord brings the fire, it is always necessary.

The fire of testing can be used, like with the wilderness experience, to prepare for what is next.

We need to learn from the tests in our lives rather than try and move them off quickly and claim victory over the devil.