Grace in the Wilderness

It’s perfectly normal to have problems in life. In fact, they are part and parcel of leading a life on earth. Especially for a Christian, the difficult and trying times are indeed more numerous and often even harsher than for others. Nobody likes to willingly go through trials though the outcome of such an ordeal is only for our benefit. As a human being, it’s not too easy to comprehend why our Father would make us endure so much pain – pain that has the capacity to challenge our physical and mental strength.

Jeremiah 31:2
Thus says the Lord:
“The people who survived the sword
Found grace in the wilderness—
Israel, when I went to give him rest.”

In the above passage,we read that the people who survived the sword found ‘grace in the wilderness’. It speaks about the children of Israel and their experience in the arid dry lands. When one thinks of a desert, what’s the first thought that comes to mind? Dryness, emptiness, nothingness, dead, no life, etc. There is no freshness and no life to be expected in such a place. But the children of Israel found ‘grace in the wilderness’ and they survived by the Lord’s hand. In the harshest conditions, the Lord never left them. He made sure His grace and comfort was there to see them through.

Our life situations too at times may feel like a parched and dried up land – nothing new to expect, nothing to look forward to. This dryness can be felt in academics, work, relationships between husband and wife, parents and children, brother and sister, friends, colleagues and even between us and God. Spiritual dryness can often leave us down and hopeless. Our communication with Him gets affected and it may come to the point where we seem to have lost all contact with Him. You pick up the phone to make a call to Him but He doesn’t seem to be on the other line. His silence can be piercing.

But the Lord who promised us, ‘I’ll never leave you nor forsake you’ (Deuteronomy 31:6, 8) lives even today. And He didn’t give that promise only during good times but even through the bad and normal times as well. Our Lord is not one who makes empty promises. If He says something He will bring it to pass in His time (Isiah 55:10,11). Not ours. We need to be patient because He waits for that perfect time. After undergoing a tough situation, we realize that the Lord’s grace, comfort and kindness were with us all along. He never leaves us as orphans. How can He? We are His children. If our Father doesn’t take care of us, who else will? The next time you are faced with a crisis, just remember that God’s silence doesn’t mean His absence. God is our refuge and strength. A very present help in trouble (Psalm 46: 1).

Grace in the Wilderness

It’s perfectly normal to have problems in life. In fact, they are part and parcel of leading a life on earth. Especially for a Christian, the difficult and trying times are indeed more numerous and often even harsher than for others. Nobody likes to willingly go through trials though the outcome of such an ordeal is only for our benefit. As a human being, it’s not too easy to comprehend why our Father would make us endure so much pain. Pain that has the capacity to challenge our physical and mental strength.

In Jeremiah 31:2, we read that “The people who survived the sword found ‘grace in the wilderness’. It speaks about the children of Israel and their experience in the arid dry lands. When one thinks of a desert, what’s the first thought that comes to mind? Dryness, emptiness, nothingness, dead, no life, etc. There is no freshness and no life to be expected in such a place. But the children of Israel found ‘grace in the wilderness’ and they survived by the Lord’s hand. In the harshest conditions, the Lord never left them. He made sure His grace and comfort was there to see them through.

Our life situations too at times may feel like a parched and dried up land—nothing new to expect, nothing to look forward to. This dryness can be felt in academics, work, relationships between husband and wife, parents and children, brother and sister, friends, colleagues and even between us and God. Spiritual dryness can often leave us down and hopeless. Our communication with Him gets affected and it may come to the point where we seem to have lost all contact with Him. You pick up the phone to make a call to Him but He doesn’t seem to be on the other line. His silence can be piercing.

But the Lord who promised us, ‘I’ll never leave you nor forsake you’ (Deut 31:6, 8) lives even today. And He didn’t give that promise only during good times but even through the bad and normal times as well. Our Lord is not one who makes empty promises. If He says something He will bring it to pass in His time (Isiah 55:10,11). Not ours. We need to be patient because He waits for that perfect time. After undergoing a tough situation, we realize that the Lord’s grace, comfort and kindness were with us all along. He never leaves us as orphans. How can He? We are His children. If our Father doesn’t take care of us, who else will? The next time you are faced with a crisis, just remember that God’s silence doesn’t mean His absence. God is our refuge and strength. A very present help in trouble (Psalm 46: 1). God bless.