Lisa Tobias, GFC South Tampa 

“There is a purpose for every season under heaven.” Ecclesiastes 3:1 I’ve had to meditate on that recently while going through a wilderness season.

We’ve all heard the wilderness process has a purpose, but who can honestly say they get excited about experiencing a wilderness journey? And, who WANTS to get stuck in the wilderness?! No, thank you!

In my recent wilderness journey, I finally figured out that I was trying to make things happen ahead of God’s timing. I was tempted to succumb to the social pressure that makes you feel like you should be further along than you are. Thankfully, through my pursuit of studying about the Wilderness to help me understand and navigate this season better, I was reminded that I shouldn’t try to rush the process because then I may miss the purpose.

James 1:4 says,
“ So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed , not deficient in any ways.” (MSG version)

In the wilderness you will be tested and tried. These trials are for us to take note of what is in our hearts and the areas of our faith that need to be strengthened. For me it was pride. Through a long, ugly cry out to the Lord on my kitchen floor, the Holy Spirit revealed an area in my life where pride was propelling me in the wrong direction. I had been making my own plans and expecting a certain result, which would have led to more self-reliance and patting my own back (instead of trusting Him, praising Him, and giving Him the glory). Sure, I could have played the “good Christian” card and posted on social media “God is good! Glory to God!!” but, the Holy Spirit convicted me and showed me where my heart really would have been. The question I had to answer: “Was I serving Him or serving a dream?!”.

Friends, His primary purpose is to prepare us for what he has prepared FOR us. I can guarantee it  most certainly involves character development. Do not abort the process. His strength allows us to accept any faults and failures, and His grace beckons repentance. Then we can move forward in faith, knowing in this season He is prepares us to be lacking nothing, ready for anything, and confident in victory.

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