Our Wilderness Time


We are encouraged in our Christian Faith to seek God through Christ and the Holy Spirit in all things. Unfortunately, this is a mission that we are incapable of fulfilling. Try as we will, our daily interferences in life can pull us away from our mission. 

We can’t just get it right 100% of the time. Does that mean we give up? I think not. A way of getting our batting average up on being able to seek God in all things is to find more and more wilderness time to be alone with Him. 

In Psalm 63:1-8, we hear David saying, “Because your steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise you. So I will bless you as long as I live; I will lift up my hands and call on your name. My soul is satisfied as with a rich feast, and my mouth praises you with joyful lips when I think of you on my bed, and meditate on you in the watches of the night: for you have been my help, and in the shadow of your wings I sing for joy.” 

David was in the Wilderness of Judah when he wrote this psalm. Anytime that we can remove ourselves from the daily interference’s of the natural world, we can better connect with the Lord. We can reflect on just how much He means to us in our lives and thank Him. 

When we are being bombarded by worldly concerns it is hard to see how God is acting in them for us. It is important that we take some quiet time each day to reflect on God’s glory, praise Him and give thanks.

We must find a little “wilderness” in each day. St. Paul wrote some of his best letters when he was in prison. There is a clarity that comes with quiet time. A friend of mine who has now gone to see God’s glory told me about a meeting he had with two friends every morning. I was visiting his home and he asked me to go see where he meets his two friends. We walked out by the garage and around where he kept his trashcans. He told me that every day when he takes the trash out he meets with these friends for about fifteen minutes. I asked him who his two friends were and he said, “God and Jesus.”

St. Paul says in 1 Corinthians (6:12 NRSV) that, “All things are lawful for me…but not all things are beneficial. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be dominated by anything.” Some “wilderness time” each day will help us to sort out what is beneficial in our lives and what is separating us from God. The expression “Carpe Diem”–seize the present opportunity and enjoy the day–begins in time with God and Jesus through the Holy Spirit. Whether it’s by the trashcans or wherever, we must set time aside for God.

David tells us of his need for God as he reflects in the wilderness saying, “O God, you are my God, I seek you, my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.” Moses and Jesus each had their wilderness and lonely places. We must make such seeking a daily routine in our lives. It is through our contact with God that we are led in all things beneficial.

Robert Halsey Pine was born at Newark, Ohio in 1943. He is a graduate of Northeastern University and completed the program of Theological Education by Extention: Education for Ministry, School of Theology, the University of the South. 

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