Into the Wilderness

I am not an outside girl.
Air conditioning and cleanliness are my jam.
Dirt, terrain and sweat--not so much.
So when God called me into the wilderness, my gut sank.
I looked around, hoping He was looking at someone else, surely I am not your girl for this God- surely.
Nope-His eyes locked with mine and He called me over to Him and whispered, "I made you for this."
My whole body filled up with joy, with hope and downright fear. This is not what I had planned.

The wilderness is isolated, expansive and you never know what will pop out from behind a tree. It seems dark and dangerous because it is unknown territory.  Each step could lead to something glorious or your greatest fear. Wilderness also makes room for maturity, trust and faith God is guiding you.  My verse of the year reads,

"For I am about to do something new.
    See, I have already begun! Do you not see it?
I will make a pathway through the wilderness.
    I will create rivers in the dry wasteland." Isaiah 43:19

So as I step into the wilderness, I must remember God cares more about my character than my comfort. He is delivering us from the lonely expansiveness of it all, step by step. It's during the sweat, the terrain, the branches to the face, the allergies, the dirt, the hot sun and thirst and wanting desperately to give up right now that God whispers, "I made you for this" again and again.

He is doing a new thing, making new ways, new roads and pathways for me and those people behind me. He is asking me to trust Him and allow Him to provide and protect in a place I did not think was my home. A place I feel out of sorts but a place I know is shedding me of myself. A place with glorious sunlight beating down through the trees that guides me, comforts me, and leads me to who He created me to be. An outside girl. A warrior.  A girl who treads on mountains and over rivers and keeps going and claims new territory and new deserts only because of who God is in me. I am an inside girl with outside girl ability in that wilderness only because of God working in me.

Today, I lace up my hiking boots and walk on. God builds hardy, wild children in the wilderness. Ones who can learn how to survive, thrive and grow with His help. He goes before us and prepares the way. If you are in what seems like the wilderness today too--the wild forest of anxiety, the desert of depression, the rough waters of loneliness--the rocky road of a new job or relationship or forgiveness---will you lace up your boots with me? Will you trust God alongside me to do something new in you? Something big? Something that will lead to breakthrough? Pray a big, bold prayer today sister. Let's walk into the wilderness together today and see what kind of glory He has in store around the next bend.

PS-My wilderness today is leaving the church family I grew up in, served in, got saved in, gave my life to for 30 years. It is difficult but it is time. Now I walk into the wilderness of the unknown territory of planting a new church alongside my husband and a team of people I call family. Would you pray over us? Over Milford? Over each soul God will transform? As God leads us into the wilderness together, He has promised He goes before us and He has made a way in the desert. Glory to God for what I know Hw will do. Amen.  


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