PRACTICING COURAGE IN THE WILDERNESS

Based on Living Compass “Practicing Courage with all your heart, soul, strength and mind”


Tuesday, March 3

“The wilderness is a place of trial and vulnerability. It wasn’t an easy place for Jesus, and it isn’t an easy place for us.”
Mariann Edgar Budde

Jesus, led by the Spirit, entered a literal wilderness where he faced trial and vulnerability. Whether or not you and I ever enter such a wild, desolate place, we will all enter emotional, physical, spiritual, and relational wildernesses at some point in our lives.

We can enter a time of wilderness by our own choice, or life can throw us into the wilderness in ways that are totally unplanned and unexpected. And, as with Jesus, at other times we are called into the wilderness by the Spirit as an opportunity to grow and deepen our identity as people of faith.

However, it is when we find ourselves entering the wilderness that our courage to be vulnerable is tested. The wilderness is always outside our comfort zone and so vulnerability is a given. What is not a given, but is a choice, is whether we will have the courage to stay in the wilderness long enough to learn what it has to teach us.

Jesus did not leave the wilderness after he stood up to the first or second or even the third temptation. It was only when the temptations stopped, and the angels came to attend him that he left. Throughout that time (40 days) Jesus was vulnerable and yet he found the strength to stay true and to be courageous.

How would you describe the transformation that took place for Jesus during his forty days in the wilderness? Looking back on your own life, can you identify a wilderness time, planned or unplanned, when you were vulnerable and yet were able to experience a significant transformation?