When God Meets Us in the Wilderness
My friend Amber Haines released her book Wild in the Hollow this past summer. That Amber Haines can write gorgeous sentences. And her book’s theme of how our desires point to the kingdom we serve has challenged me to go back to another friend’s book. Jen Pollock Michel’s Teach Us to Want is about the theology of desire.
Today I’m guest posting as part of Amber’s Wild in the Hollow series on her blog, and thinking about Jen’s words and what my own desires for comfort and ease reveal about me.
Here’s a little peek:
There are parts of me that only want comfort, ease. I want a life of surface-level pleasure. I want my kids to be healthy and happy and get good grades and score winning soccer goals.
What is false desire and what is true desire? There are big longings in me: I want to win the hardest worker awards and be a perfect mom and be the person everybody loves, and never feel overwhelmed, or afraid.
But those longings for ease and a life where I’m not afraid? They are the shallow side of my story. They are desires that only scratch the surface of who God longs for me to be. My most real desires are the result of God’s grace in my life.
To get to my truest desires I have to be courageous enough to dive into the darkness, through the pain, and find myself on the other side in the bright sun, in the place where my false desires are exposed for what they are: fear, selfishness, comfort at the cost of others.
Rich, miraculous love exists on the other side of pain.
And to get there, I must first walk boldly into the wilderness, where God met Moses in a burning bush, where the people of God wandered for forty years, where Jesus fasted and was tempted. The wilderness is the space between the promises and the promised land. The wilderness is the pain between our shallow desires and our deeper, more real desires. We move from loving our own comfort to loving the things God loves.