The Order of Things

Often it seems that our most important lessons come at difficult times.  Maybe it's in those times that we're finally paying attention or realize maybe we didn't have things all figured out.  Tough spots in life may be the only time we keep our mouths closed enough to listen for what we need to hear.  Whatever the case, we tend to learn those lessons that stick with us during our most trying times, or, to use biblical language, in our wilderness, or desert, experiences.

It was through the parted waters of the sea that the Israelites learned the power of God, but it was in the desert they learned to trust God.  According to the gospel writer, Luke, after his baptism, the first place Jesus goes is the desert.  Oh, he learns something there.  As do we.

What we learn in wilderness is that we are in need of God.  When we were in Egypt, so to speak, we knew our livelihoods would be okay .  Now, we're stammering in the desert hungry and thirsty; it's here we have to learn who and what we depend upon.  As God's people, we live and move and have our being in God.  

That rolls of the faith-tongue quite nicely.  It's unfortunate, however, how much our other words and actions demonstrate how quickly we can learn to depend on other things, including ourselves.  That was Jesus' temptation in the desert, and it's ours today in the "deserts" of our lives.

If we're going to get through the wilderness, we have to know the proper of things in our life.  This proper order involves our first fruits.  It's not just that we learn to give God our best, but that we also trust that God will provide the rest of what we need.  I hope this sermon helps you find your order.

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Stay blessed...john

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