Devotional,  Thankful Thursdays

Hope in the Wilderness

The Trial

The promised land was close. 

The Israelites were fresh out of slavery, yet fearful for their future. 

“If only we had died in the land of Egypt!” the Israelites said. “Or if only we had died in this wilderness!”

They came to the land God promised them and saw it occupied by a force that seemed too great. Off they ran. Scared.

It took forty more years before they conquered Jericho and entered the promised land because of their disobedience and their complaining. 

You can read more on that in Numbers 13 and 14.

Are you facing a wilderness season? I get it. Wilderness seasons happen and they’re hard. But there’s hope.

Friend, it’s time.

It’s Time

It’s time. 

To look ahead.

To forgive.

To DO.

Time to be purposeful.

To believe that God’s promises are yes and amen. 

To put that mustard seed of faith to work.

To trust that God is faithful.

Time to speak life and focus on above.

Even in the desert.

Especially in the desert.

12 Scriptures to Help You Through that Wilderness

  1. Draw near to God.

So submit to God. But resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and make your hearts pure, you double-minded. Grieve, mourn, and weep. Turn your laughter into mourning and your joy into despair. Humble yourselves before the Lord and he will exalt you.

James 4:7-10 NET

2. He is good.

You prepare a feast before me in plain sight of my enemies.
You refresh my head with oil; my cup is completely full.
Surely your goodness and faithfulness will pursue me all my days,
and I will live in the Lord’s house for the rest of my life.

Psalm 23:5,6 NET

3. He can bring good out of anything for those who love Him.

And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes on behalf of the saints according to God’s will. And we know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose, because those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that his Son would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.

Romans 8:27-29 NET

4. Speak life. More on that here.

Death and life are in the power of the tongue,
and those who love its use will eat its fruit.

Proverbs 18:21 NET

5. Though it might not be what we want to hear when we are in a wilderness time, trials produce endurance.

My brothers and sisters, consider it nothing but joy when you fall into all sorts of trials, because you know that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect effect, so that you will be perfect and complete, not deficient in anything. 

James 1:2-4 NET

6. Wisdom is yours for the asking. But you must ask having faith.

But if anyone is deficient in wisdom, he should ask God, who gives to all generously and without reprimand, and it will be given to him. But he must ask in faith without doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed around by the wind.

James 1:5,6 NET

7. If you don’t have the faith, just ask. If you’ve been around my blog for any length of time you must know this verse is a favorite of mine (another post on it here).

And Jesus said to him, “‘If you can’! All things are possible for one who believes.” Immediately the father of the child cried out and said, “I believe; help my unbelief!” And when Jesus saw that a crowd came running together, he rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it, “You mute and deaf spirit, I command you, come out of him and never enter him again.”

Mark 9:23-25 NET

8. Trust the Lord with all your heart. Also, just read Proverbs 3 over and over and over. Especially verses 5 and 6.

Do not let mercy and truth leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart. Then you will find favor and good understanding, in the sight of God and people. Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding. Acknowledge him in all your ways, and he will make your paths straight.

Proverbs 3:3-6 NET

9. Read God’s Word. Know what you believe. So that you can face that hard time.

Also, Psalm 119 is just amazing. Super long but worth every second.

With all my heart I seek you. Do not allow me to stray from your commands. In my heart I store up your words, so I might not sin against you. You deserve praise, O Lord. Teach me your statutes.

Psalm 119:10-12 NET

10. Even when you feel alone, you are not. He cares for you.

And God will exalt you in due time, if you humble yourselves under his mighty hand by casting all your cares on him because he cares for you.  Be sober and alert. Your enemy the devil, like a roaring lion, is on the prowl looking for someone to devour. Resist him, strong in your faith, because you know that your brothers and sisters throughout the world are enduring the same kinds of suffering.

1 Peter 5:6-9 NET

11. Let peace and thanksgiving reign in your heart. And may you abide in His presence.

And to all these virtues add love, which is the perfect bond. Let the peace of Christ be in control in your heart (for you were in fact called as one body to this peace), and be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and exhorting one another with all wisdom, singing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, all with grace in your hearts to God.

Colossians 3:14-16 NET

12. Now that we’ve focused on scripture and our faith is built, speak to that mountain.

Peter remembered and said to him, “Rabbi, look! The fig tree you cursed has withered.” Jesus said to them, “Have faith in God. I tell you the truth, if someone says to this mountain, ‘Be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him. For this reason I tell you, whatever you pray and ask for, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. Whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven will also forgive you your sins.”

Mark 11:21-25 NET

Abide in Faith

Friends, even the wilderness battles belong to the Lord. But our faith must remain strong, and that’s not always easy. Surround yourself with people that promote faith. With scripture, with worship. And don’t wait for the hard season. We need to abide in faith so that when trials come, we’re ready.

I have had this song on repeat, and you know I love to leave you with a worship song, so here it is. Battle Belongs by Phil Wickham.

A Moment of Worship

A Prayer

Lord, I repent for not trusting you. Please guide me through this wilderness season. Strengthen my faith. Help me not to doubt your goodness. Even when you’re quiet as you often are through the testing times, I believe you are with me and will never forsake me. Thank you for scripture and for a new day to refocus on you.

Amen.

I’d love to hear from you. Do you have scriptures you cling to in the hard times? Comment below with your favorites.

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