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  • Bob Wilburn, District Superintendent

"...for we are here in a desert place..."



“And when the day began to wear away, then came the twelve, and said unto him, Send the multitude away, that they may go into the towns and country round about, and lodge, and get victuals: for we are here in a desert place.

(Luke 9:12)


Notice with me the statement: for we are here in a desert place”. Desert” speaks of a dry place. Ever been there? Spiritually dry… insatiably thirsty? Truth be known - we’ve all been there, at one time or another. We can do without a lot of things but, we must have Him…. Jesus… the Living Water. Thirst is not a bad thing. It is our thirst that drives us to water. Our thirst creates a reaching for and seeking of God that brings the rain of the Spirit and ultimately blesses others. Are you thirsty for God? Is there a longing in the depths of your soul for an outpouring of His Spirit that brings refreshing and life? Moderate, mediocre, and mundane cannot sustain you any longer. Spiritual refreshing comes to those who go beyond what they usually do in worship, prayer, and praise. You may be in a desert but, you don’t have to live there.


Desert” speaks of a barren place. Regardless of what you do or how well you do it, there seems to be no results… barren. No spiritual births. Dry altars and empty pews. Barren! There’s a wealth of things I don’t know—but I do know this: the laws of God work regardless of geographic location or cultural conditions. The law of sowing and reaping, in Galatians 6:7 works anyplace, anytime, and by anyone that works the law. Seed confined to the barn never produces a harvest. Harvest is contingent upon the sowing. We are responsible for the sowing… He is responsible for the harvest. Without sowing…. a desert remains a desert. God never promised WE would see the harvest (sometimes we do—one thing for sure we won’t see ALL the harvest from ALL the seed we’ve sown)---He only promised there would be a harvest.


Desert” speaks of isolation…. a deserted place. It’s possible to be around people everyday yet, feel isolated and alone. David, the sweet Psalmist of Israel, said in Psalms 142:4, “No man careth for my soul”. Do not allow yourself to be governed by your feelings: “...For he himself has said, I will never leave you nor forsake you. So we may BOLDLY say: the Lord is MY helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?” (Hebrews 13:5-6)


In conclusion, I suppose that deserts are part of the journey. Some incredible things can happen in a desert. Moses had an experience with God and received a life-changing call on the back side of a desert. In a dry place, God made a miraculous provision of water from a rock. There can be ministry anywhere…even in a desert… In Mark 1:45, it says that Jesus was in the desert but, “they came to Him from every quarter”. In Acts 8:26, the angel of the Lord sent Philip unto Gaza… a desert place, to witness and win the Ethiopian eunuch to Jesus. And…. if God can raise up an army out of a graveyard (Ezekiel 37), He can bring revival to a desert!


For The Harvest,

Bob Wilburn

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