Summary: No one enjoys being in a wilderness season. Here's how to not prolong it.
I used to take a fair number of road trips. I took personal trips, too, but I traveled with my work as well, for about ten years. I always planned my trips carefully to avoid rush hours in large cities, and to be able to stay in a safe place each night.
In order to make reservations for each night of your trip, you need to know when you will arrive at the end of each day. There are many factors in traveling that affect arrival times.
• The Terrain – mountainous terrain is much slower going – and is specified in drive time, not miles
• Weather – what is the environment like on the road
• The type of road
• The type of vehicle you’re in – some vehicles are faster
• Experience of the driver
• What condition the driver is in
• How many people the driver interacts with along the way – We all know at least one person that can’t get ANYTHING done because they’re too busy running their mouth all the time)
• Time of Day You’re traveling – which affects the Traffic
• How many attractions along the way I stopped at
• And lastly, HOW MANY BREAKS I TOOK. How many times I pulled off and parked to get something to eat or just stretch my legs.
• I have never met anyone who wanted a longer wilderness journey.
• I never knew anyone who said “Yes, Lord! Make my journey LONGER!”
• And anyone who prays to be put in the wilderness has for sure never been through one.
So today I want to talk to you about How To Prolong Your Wilderness Seasons – So you know what NOT to do if you DON’T want them prolonged.
We can tell a lot about how to prolong a wilderness season by looking at the journey of the Israelites when they were in the desert.
This is a list of things that constitute pulling over and parking on your trip through the wilderness. They are the things that will cause your wilderness season to go on for FAR longer, just like many of them did for the Israelites.
1. The number ONE way to prolong your wilderness season is to SIN –Sin got the Israelites punished time and time again in the Bible.
Remember why Jesus was led into the wilderness?
1 Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.
This is related to Deuteronomy 8:2 :
2 And thou shalt remember all the way which the Lord thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep his commandments, or no.
Expound on Deut. 8:2:
To humble thee – The wilderness is a place of humbling. It is a place where we do not have our usual ability to do for ourselves.
In my experiences, I found the wilderness was often a place of working for far less than what I was usually paid, it was a place of having to live where I did not wish to live and be around people I didn’t want to be around. A place where I seemed to have power over nothing in my circumstances.
A place where our focus is taken away from prestige, status and social climbing, and we become focused on more important things. God humbles us to draw us closer to Him, as well as to help us let go of our pridefulness. Pridefulness is a wide open gate to Satan to attack your life.
18 Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.
To prove thee – Only 2 months after I left for Texas on my water walk of 2009-2010, I was struggling with the fact that I had expected to see much more happen after arriving in the new place, and it was confusing.
Not only was nothing happening, but He wasn’t telling me why. As I was reading Deut. 8:2… “to prove you, to know what was in your heart…,” I saw a flash vision of a seamstress testing a piece of thread by pulling it taut between her hands.
Being an amateur seamstress myself, I knew testing the thread like that was something you did to be sure the thread would be strong enough for its intended purpose, and to be sure it won’t break, causing all your work to unravel.
He was showing me that in our wilderness seasons, we are being proved…we are being tested…to see whether we are strong enough for our intended purpose, or whether we will break, causing all His work to unravel.
To know what was in thine heart (He wants your heart to be fully His). We are often unaware when we have given our heart to an idol, that’s why the Lord has to show us we have idols in our life.