One Thing 8/29/12

Matt. 4:1 ¶ Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.
Luke 4:1 ¶ Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led around by the Spirit in the wilderness

All of us find ourselves in wilderness places from time to time. You know, those places where the battle is intense on every side. It could be external circumstances or internal warfare. A wilderness can be an unexpected barren and dry place emotionally and spiritually. Whatever your wilderness looks like, it’s not a lot of fun. One thing for certain is that the Devil always comes to us in the wilderness as the accuser, to try and heap condemnation, doubt and fear on us. What we hear from the accuser is that this must be our fault some how. We must have done something wrong, and that God is displeased with us, and that is why he is allowing us to go through this hard time. Understand, that the enemy will always find something in our lives that isn’t perfect that he will point to as the reason God isn’t pleased with us. For sure, there are those times when God will allow us to go through a wilderness to get our attention. His jealous love will use hard places, and intense warfare to awaken our love for Him, but more often than not, that is not the case at all. If God is disciplining you out of His jealous love He will make it very clear, with redemption in His voice, what He is after. It is likely something He has been talking to you about for some time. The truth is, most of the time the wilderness is just part of the Cosmic conflict that we have been thrust into. God will accomplish all kind of awesome stuff there, but we aren’t there because we’ve done something wrong. God doesn’t use cheap tricks like condemnation, accusation, and guilt to separate us to Himself. Look what it says about Jesus. He was filled with the Spirit, the Father had just told Him that He was well pleased with Him, and yet the Holy Spirit led Him into the wilderness to be tempted by the Devil. It had nothing to do with sin, it was just part of the great Cosmic conflict Jesus was plunged into. The wilderness is challenging enough without you carrying around all the accusations from the enemy. There are battles to be won there. It’s a place of advance, intimacy, and
empowering. You can’t discover how to lean on your Beloved, or advance in your eternal destiny (learning how to be an overcomer so you are equipped to reign as His Bride in the ages to come) if you are exhausting all of your energy fighting guilt, and condemnation. We have been baptized into Christ, which means we have been plunged into His destiny, and warfare is just part of the deal.