How do you feel about the wilderness? 

When I was a kid, my dad planned this trip to the Grand Canyon. We were going to drive up to the rim of the canyon, stay the night in a hotel, and then hike down the next day and stay at the bottom. I threw up 14 times the night before our hike down. I don’t know if it was nerves or what. I think we can all agree the wilderness is not for the faint of heart…or stomach. When we’re in the wilderness, we are in unfamiliar territory. The comforts of routine are gone, and we have to trust.

Jesus was well-versed in the wilderness! Before His public ministry began, the Holy Spirit led Him into the wilderness (Matthew 4:1)! Whoa! Wait! Why would the Spirit lead the Son toward temptation? Is it possible there are simply some gifts of God that can never be received outside of a desert experience?

I think the Spirit invites all of us into the wilderness. In fact, every year for centuries, the Church worldwide has gone on a 40-day journey called Lent. Lent is a season of preparation for Good Friday and Easter. Lent is inspired by Jesus’ journey into the wilderness. It’s a journey God invites us on to receive faith found in the desert.

I pray you will join us this week as we walk with Jesus into the wilderness, closer to Lent, closer to God alone. 

Following Him forward,

Pastor Brad

P. S.

Here is this week’s message notes and group discussion guide link.

And here’s a link to the Lenten Devotional Pastor Char has recommended for us: 40 Days of Decrease: A different kind of hunger. A different kind of fast.

P. P. S.

And here are some great videos relevant to our Lenten journey.