Wonder in the Wasteland
We all live on planet earth. But if you’re a believer, you probably carry around this little longing, this feeling, this deep knowing that the world is not as it should be. Do you have this inclination that either you belong somewhere else, or that this world, this place we call home, needs a radical transformation before you could feel "at home?"
I share your feeling. I share your longing for things to become different. I also want to escape the anguish in my heart, to find a place of peace and comfort. And while I know that one day redemption will come, I don’t want to sit around letting the the enemy steal any wonder the Lord is willing to give me today. It's easy to start thinking there’s nothing left for us here and hope in the world to come. But when Jesus was here he continued to hope. In fact, he prayed, “Your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” (Matthew 16:10)
Why would Jesus pray for the Father’s will and kingdom to come to earth if it weren’t possible?
We don’t have to wait for eternity to experience life. We can have it here, but we have to take back the wonder we’ve let die in our wasteland. We have to let Him redeem us now; giving Him each little place in our hearts, bit by bit, until His life shines in our dark places.
Do you have a "wasteland" in your heart or mind? A wasteland is a place where your life situations or choices have transformed your wonderland into a barren desert. You’ve come to the conclusion it’s too late to make anything of your used up life. In your wasteland, hope is nonexistent and redemption feels impossible.
How does a broken person bring wonder back to a place where there’s nothing green in sight?
Friend, would you let me start to bring your wonder back by telling you that God is for you? The Bible says, “If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave Him up for us all, how will He not also with Him graciously give us all things? No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life..nor anything in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord." (Romans 8:31-32, 37-38 emphasis mine)
If you’ve been in your wasteland for very long, I bet you’re thinking, “Nice words Sharie, but I don’t believe them. God can’t fix me.” I’ve shared your disbelief. I’ve wondered if I could believe, too. But will you let me tell you a story?
A in a large city, a woman who works from home hears two men knock on the door. She opens the door thinking, “Two new customers! Maybe I’ll be able to pay the bills this week.” But when she opens the door, the working woman finds they are not customers looking for a good time, but spies from the God of the Jews. She’s been hearing about this God who punishes people who hurt His people. He is willing to send plagues, disease and even death to the ones who keep them in slavery in order to rescue them. And now, two of his representatives are in her place of business. They have entered her wasteland.
There is nothing for holy people in her home. Do they know she is a prostitute? Do they know she sells love for a living? Do they know she doesn’t even know what love feels like anymore? Do they know she’s an unholy, ruined wasteland; unworthy to be seen or touched by anyone like them?
But they aren’t looking at her wasteland. Instead they’ve found a woman who is willing to fear their God more than her earthly king. They see a woman who is willing to risk her life for their protection. And what none of them see is that her willingness to believe is planting a seed of wonder in her wasteland. A woman who only saw herself as a worthless prostitute can now re-work her wonder. Is her life as worthless as she assumed? Perhaps God loves people like her; and if He loves her, He can love anyone!
Her wonder grows and her life produces an unexpected lineage of faith. She becomes the mother of Boaz, who marries Ruth from whose son, Obed, Jesse the father of David comes and through whom Jesus is born! (Matthew 5:1) From this woman’s worthless wasteland comes the greatest wonder the world has ever known-Jesus.
If your life feels like a “wasteland” I have a sneaky suspicion there’s a place of wonder in there somewhere. I don’t know where it is, but I know God wants you to find it.
Are you willing to look? Is God trying to lead you out of your “wasteland”? Rahab needed two spies to help her find her wonder. Perhaps God is using someone to help you get out of yours as well. Will you ask them for help and prayer today?
If you know someone who needs to hear this message, please share it with them today!
© 2018 by Sharie King. All rights reserved.