Wilderness Survival Training

By Patrick Hawthorne




Sometimes, Jesus wants to minister to what’s in us before He releases us to someone else.”                             Mel Wild



My last two posts have been focused on moving into the plans and the purposes the Lord has called us to.  As I wrote in Preparing to be Prepared, sometimes we may not be seeing open doors because we are not prepared for when that door does open.  In I Want it Now, I addressed our sometimes bratty attitude of wanting things now and wanting it done our way.  It is in those moments we must learn to humble ourselves under the mighty hand of God. (1 Peter 5:6)

In this post I would like to cover another facet of why we might not be immediately moving into the plans and purposes we know the Lord has called us to.  I like to call this facet, “Wilderness Survival Training.” Each born again child of God must undergo this training at least once in their lives if they want to grow in the things of the Lord.  To circumvent this training is to set oneself up for certain failure.

It is in the wilderness that we learn to trust in the Lord will all our heart.  It is where we learn to cast aside doubt and fear and to walk by faith.  Most of all, it is where we learn to totally expose our hearts before the Lord and to allow Him to work a work in us that will forever change our lives.  One might consider it as a “Train the Trainer,” type program.  Once again, to circumvent such training is to set oneself up for certain failure.

Consider the words of Mel Wild.

“I think part of the problem with our preparations is that we do the “activity” stuff (read the Bible, praying, seeking…) but we’re not actually opening our hearts to what’s going on inside of us.  That’s part of humility too…being vulnerable to His penetrating but loving gaze.  Are we letting Him deal with our anger, fears, wounds, disappointments, ambitions, etc.?  This “Word” searches the inner thoughts and motives of our hearts (Hebrew 4:12).  The Word is Jesus Himself.  Sometimes, Jesus wants to minister to what’s in us before He releases us to someone else.” (Underline mine)

Let that last sentence burrow down deep within your heart.  When was the last time you allowed Jesus to minister to you?  When was the last time you totally opened up to the Lord and said, “Here I am, mess and all.”  By freely submitting to the wilderness training, you are putting yourself in a position to where you will be a valuable witness for the Lord and to His goodness.  Be blessed.

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Posted in Christian, teaching, writing
12 comments on “Wilderness Survival Training
  1. Wally Fry says:

    A few have done that. Elijah and Moses jump right to mind.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. “When was the last time you allowed Jesus to minister to you?”

    Amen! Great words from you, and from Mel too. I call that being selfish, but it isn’t “selfish” at all. John 13:8 says, “Peter saith unto him, Thou shalt never wash my feet. Jesus answered him, If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me.”

    Consider that Jesus Christ Himself spent nearly 30 years preparing for a ministry that lasted what, a few years? He is often to be found off by Himself in prayer, alone in the Garden of Gethsemane, and seeking God personally, focusing on Himself.

    Except when He’s napping! I love the scene in the boat with the disciples and the storm is all around them and Jesus is just taking a nap. The disciples wake Him up, “help,we’re all going to die.” And Jesus rebukes the wind and says, “where is your faith??”

    So naps too, are an important part of the Christian life. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. dawnlizjones says:

    Generally this would be a very confusing topic for me, until I got the book by John Eldredge Waking the Dead (and the workbook) and painstakingly took myself though it. Very important discipline.


  4. Mel Wild says:

    Good word, Patrick. And I appreciate you adding mine to the mix. 🙂 These are hard-won realities that we learn in the waiting, but very precious and transformational.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Pam Byrd says:

    Patrick, that is so right on. You are one of life’s true blessings


  6. DeniseBalog says:

    Like the woman at the well, Jesus was Himself refreshed from giving her His living water. She took from Him and He was refreshed as well!! Yes Patrick, seems I too continue to learn this lesson each time Jesus prepares to release me to something new and totally out of my current norm. I identify it as getting down and raw. Down on my face pouring out my guts which usually is my fears and what I think I don’t like about the situation or plan! Big ol’ cry fit!! Then Jesus😊💖 Tender as He wipes the tears, firms up my heart and strengthens my weak knees to boldly walk into all His good plans and purpose for my life😊 Good post, wise words and advice😆


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