Of Deserts and Winter

14Feb09
Over the past few years, I’ve occasionally drawn similarities between my life and a desert or my life and the season of winter.  While this may at first glance seem rather pessimistic, if you follow the train of thought long enough, you eventually reach a point of significant hope.  Here are some snippets from my journaling…

Desert is…

December 14, 2008.  Realized… that this is STILL the desert I knew I had to traverse.  Guess I’d hoped to have some end in sight by now and hence the disappointment.  But desert is desert – barren, dry, seemingly endless, colorless, lifeless, scorching.  Desert isn’t the beach – that likeness wears off in about 10 minutes.  The hopeful thing, though – that which keeps esperanza alive – is that while there are great deserts in the world, that is not all there is!  Great oceans, great mountains, great hills and valleys, great plains – all this exists WITH great deserts.  So while desert may be the terrain God has chosen for now, it cannot be the terrain forever (unless, of course, I’m dull and thick-headed enough to not learn whatever lessons God has for me here…).

  1. Hot.
  2. Barren.
  3. Dry.
  4. Seemingly endless.
  5. Colorless.
  6. Lifeless.
  7. Scorching.
  8. Not the beach.
  9. Part of the topographical makeup of the world.
  10. Where the Israelites learned to know the Living God.

Winter is…

November 30, 2008. [I’m] encouraged that God is at work, even when there’s nothing [visibly] changing.  One of the things I absolutely loved at GMHC this year was during a time of worship and prayer – prayed by season…  I stood up during winter.  Winter is frigid, but it can also be very beautiful.  And spring would not be spring without winter.  “Unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies…” [see John 12:24.]

  1. Frigid.  (Really cold.)
  2. Bare.
  3. Stark.
  4. Gray.
  5. Dark.
  6. Beautiful (especially when it snows).
  7. Raw.
  8. Dead. (Nothing appears to be growing.)
  9. Dirty.  (Just remember how frozen salted slush looks on the side of the road.)
  10. A yearly prelude to the miracle that is spring.
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