The blessing of the wilderness

This past month I seem to have been drawn and have parked myself over in Exodus.  One thing out of many have caused me to slow down and take long moments of pause.  One verse has really kept me up late at night, and I've been dwelling on it throughout my days.  That verse reads:

"Now when Pharaoh had let the people go, God did not lead them by the way of land of the Philistines, even though it was near; for God said, 'The people might change their minds when they see war, and return to Egypt."Hence God led the people around by the way of the wilderness to the Red Sea ..." ~ Ex. 13 18, NASB

In this situation the wilderness was a blessing to Israel. 

And if you're in the wilderness right now—be careful how you respond because you just may be in the middle of your blessing.



In thinking about this passage it reminded me about an experience I went through some years ago when my husband and I purchased some land.  We'd moved out of our apartment into a hotel for supposedly three weeks.  The deal with the land didn't come through and we ended up living in a hotel for over a year!  We lived there with our, then, four kids and all of our homeschool stuff —we even had our three computers and whiteboards with us.  Yes.  It was chaotic in which I tried to find some normalcy for our family.  However, I was livid!  I was so mad with God and my husband and didn't mind telling either of them so.  The deal was I was to have the babies and homeschool...take care of the family.  They were to look after us financially and God was to look out for all of us in every aspect, right? 

"Wrong"  I thought.

One morning while having my Bible reading the Lord convicted me about submission, and a few days later a friend from my church gave me a ticket to see Beth Moore and Priscilla Shierer at one of the local churches.  I went and was blessed.





What was their topic?  You bet, submission.

That day, I cried and prayed out to the Lord and asked Him to forgive me for how I had been acting.  I made a promise to Him to do better and to be more respectful to Him and my husband.

When I got back to the hotel I was joyful, but sorrowful and climbed in the bed next to where my kids and mother (she had come to watch the kids so I could go) was. I didn't have much privacy so I threw the covers over my head and wept...bitterly, "Why was life so hard for me?"  "What had I ever done to deserve such harsh treatment?'

I didn't have much time to give into my sorrow before my husband, the salesman, came "home" from work.  "Hey I found a house that I want you to go see."

"No I don't want to go.  You go and do all the paper work by yourself."  I told him.
"I want you to go with me, Angie."
"NO I ..." Then I remembered the conference and what I'd told my Father...you know the other man in my life who is so patient and gentle with me.
"Okay, let me wash my face."

When we got to the house I immediately remembered my prayer journal list that Elisabeth Elliot had told me to start keeping.  In that journal I'd written, four years previous, that I'd wanted a new house in an older neighborhood with a few elderly neighbors that the kids and I could help out and visit. 
The land that this home had been built on and completed a week previous to us visiting was on an acre and the man who owned the land took the strip of acre and built five new houses on it.  The house that we were seeing being one of the houses.

I'd also told the Lord that I wanted the house surrounded by trees, my husband wanted all brick and we both wanted a one story.

Guess what sat before me?

My husband noticed it right away too.

"Come on let's go inside.  The realtor is waiting."  He said.
"No, you go in.  I'm going to wait here ..."  Yep, I was still angry.  Still having my tantrum.


But...He brought my words back to memory.  You see I told Him that I would submit to Him and to him, but that I would also have behavior worthy of our family name: Christian.  Regardless of the circumstance, so that the people around me would always see Christ in me.

The realtor was watching me.  I prayerfully got out of our van and held my hand out in greeting, "Hi I'm Angela Ambroise."

Yes, we got the house, and we are here today.  We've been here 11 years.

What's my point in sharing this with you?

The wilderness is for us to grow and to learn.

The wilderness is not a bad thing when either the Lord takes us through it Himself , as He did with Israel, or if He allows us to go through it from our own disobedience.  Whatever the reason let your wilderness experience be your holy experience, and remember whatever you are experiencing: the Lord is either leading or allowing it.

The Lord loves me and He loves you of that we can be sure.

{Update} I forgot to mention that we moved out of the particular house that I spoke about in this post for two years.  We moved to our other "dream house".  However, that house caught on fire Feb. 28, 2010 and we moved back here. 


God saw us through that experience too.  It was snowing that particular year, we were all freezing, but the Lord allowed us to drive only a few miles to this house...click on the heat and move some of our belongings in.  We never had to move with anyone or into another hotel (thank God) we just simply moved back home.

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