The Wilderness Experience

The Israelites had a four hundred and thirty year stint in Egypt which culminated in severe hardship under King Pharaoh but the Lord delivered them using Moses. And immediately they left Egypt and successfully crossed the Red Sea on dry land, they began another journey to the Promised Land (a land flowing with milk and honey) via the wilderness.  But along the way, they rebelled against God and he punished them such that their journey which was supposed to last barely eleven (11) days went on to last forty (40) agonizing years. The Promised Land was in fact within their reach but they just couldn’t get in there.  On the whole, their experience was characterized by hardship, insecurity, grief, terror, multiple deaths etc.  I label it ‘The Wilderness Experience’.

Wilderness Experiences are not restricted to the Israelites alone.  They afflict the entire human race.  Figuratively speaking, any human experience that makes a person to stray from his or her chosen goal needlessly or that causes prolonged hardship, insecurity, frustration, grief; etc can be regarded as a Wilderness Experience.  And if care is not taken, it can cause untimely death.

There are many distinctive facts about Wilderness Experiences.  Let us consider some of them for now.

1.  They are inevitable.   Most of the time, Wilderness Experiences are inevitable therefore all of us will experience them at some point that is, if we haven’t already.  We should be happy though since Jesus fore-warned us about them in John 16:33 when he said ‘’…In the world you will have tribulation…’’.  His admonition is invaluable as it helps to prepare us for them. 

2. They don’t last forever.  While it may be necessary to pass through wilderness experiences, we do not have to live there.  And more importantly, they don’t last forever.  Apostle Paul confirmed this in 2 Corinthians 4:17 when he said: ‘’For our light affliction, which is but for a moment…’’.  Bear this in mind all the time.

3.  Only strong willed people will overcome them.  The outcome of Wilderness Experiences depends largely on how they are handled.  Often, Satan initiates them and he strikes harder and sharper when his victims are spineless.  But if you stand up to him, eye ball to eyeball, he will flee from you (James 4:7).  Apostle Paul also advised us to endure hardships (Wilderness Experiences) robustly (2 Timothy 2:3).  When you do so in the name of Jesus, you will overcome them eventually; this I am positive about.

4.  God is ready to set you free from them.  The bible is replete with people who encountered Wilderness Experiences in the past.  They include Job, Moses, Elijah, King David, Jephtha, Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, Abed-Nego, Apostles Paul, Silas, Peter et cetera.  All of them relied on God for their deliverance and they were not let down.  In the same vein, God is willing and able to deliver you too if you allow him.  He attested to this fact in Psalm 50:15 when he said: ‘’call upon Me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you…’’

Friend, are you or somebody close to you going through a ‘Wilderness Experience’ at the moment? Are you tired of it and are you prepared to do away with it? If you are, then ask God to help you today and he will in Jesus name.  Amen.

Jesus is Lord!

Use Your Rod Wisely

In Exodus chapter 4, God instructed Moses to liberate the Israelites from bondage in Egypt.  From all indications, nothing qualified Moses for this big task.  He was not rich, his background was not great, he was not fluent in speech and he was even a fugitive.  The only thing that stood him out in the crowd was his ordinary shepherd rod, which was nothing to write home about anyway.  However it was transformed from ordinary to extraordinary just because he allowed God to control its use and it became the chief weapon used to liberate the Israelites.  As a reward, God backed him up through out the remaining part of his life such that he recorded many unbelievable achievements for which he is revered till today.

Figuratively speaking, anything that stands you out in the crowd is your ‘rod’.  It could be your position, wealth, background, power, education, beauty, physique, youthfulness, eloquence, etc.  If you allow God to control its use to His glory and for the benefit of mankind, it will become extraordinary.  Moses would have probably died unrecognized and unsung if he had not used his rod for the benefit of his people as directed by God.

Friend, God is looking for people to lift up in this age and time and I believe you are one of them-please give Him a chance.  Position yourself rightly by first using your ‘rod’ to put smile on the face of at least one person this month. There are many widows, orphans, aged, poor, sick, needy, charity based organizations and institutions out there waiting for your help.  Please help them!  You don’t have to be a millionaire before you reach out to the vulnerable members of the society and the good news is that God will definitely reward you beyond your expectation (Mathews 25:34-40).  May you not lose your reward and may it be full in Jesus name.  Amen.

Finally, let me use this opportunity to commit you into God’s hands and may you be divinely lifted up throughout this month and beyond in Jesus name.  Amen. 

Jesus is Lord!

 

Stretch Forth Your Hand

We are going to look at Mark 3:1-5 for today’s write up.  Jesus entered the synagogue, saw a man with a withered hand and healed him despite opposition. 

As you know, a withered hand is a useless, non-functioning hand.  Therefore, you may not be far from the truth if you conclude that the man’s life must have been greatly hampered by his handicapping condition. 

Figuratively speaking, a withered hand can be anything that makes a man’s life taxing and unexciting.  For example, ill health, poverty, lack of focus, lack of any meaningful progress, unfruitfulness, debt, joblessness, fear, destructive habits, broken home, irresponsible spouse, wayward children, ill luck, lack of assistance and so on are some examples of figurative withered hands.  If you are free from them, I congratulate you warmly. But if are not, then you need assistance, you need healing and you need freedom.  The good news is that divine help is not far away from you.

The man with the withered hand was fortunate enough to encounter Jesus Christ and he received his healing and freedom promptly. This same Jesus is still alive and active-He has not changed.  He is the same yesterday, today, and forever and He is asking you to step forward i.e. boldly break loose from those situations that are restricting you (Verse 3), stretch out your hand i.e. expose the cause(s) of the pain and sorrow in your life to Him (verse 5) and receive your healing and freedom; all opposition not withstanding.  Listen friend, I strongly urge you to make use of this golden opportunity today; prayerfully do all He asked you to do and I assure you that your life will never remain the same again.

Finally, let me commit you into God’s able hands as I wish you a month of ultimate freedom.  Go into it with full assurance that your expectations will not be dashed.

Jesus is Lord!