The great unknown is a scary place. It’s overwhelming, intimidating and uncomfortable. The possibilities of “if,” “when,” “why,” and “how” linger throughout. It’s often thick with a blanket of uncertainty; a fog that covers the space and hinders any opportunity to see what’s on the other side.
The unknown can look like an open field with no end in sight or it can be like the darkest room with the only light being the single candlestick in your hand. You feel alone, but sense you are not. God’s Spirit is there with you and has never left your side. Still, you can’t shake the uneasiness of feeling isolated, neglected, and lonely. The world is moving around you but you feel you are standing still.
Not knowing what lies ahead but recognizing all that is trailing behind. It has brought you to this moment, to this place, even if you can’t make any sense of it. What you forget is that the road that led you here was initially unpaved as well but perhaps appeared more put together or seamless. Maybe a detour brought you to the unknown or maybe it was a path you were meant to be on all along. You can look back and try to make sense of how you ended up where you are or you can choose to move forward.
Step by step, in a big open space or in a dark enclosed room, you have no idea where you are traveling but you trust God is with you. You may not see Him, you may not feel Him, but your faith reminds you He is there. He was with you in the past, He is with you now, and He will guide you to where you are going – to a place He’s already been. A place He’s already prepared you for.
The great unknown is often referred to as the “wilderness” or the “desert” and is referenced nearly 300 times throughout the Bible. If you are feeling like you are in the “dark” in your life right now, be encouraged that you are not alone! In fact, many have gone before you and they, too, have journeyed into unknown territory not knowing or understanding what the purpose is, where they are going, why they are experiencing this season, and how they will find their way out of it.
I have been in this place of uncertainty before and I am there again. In the wilderness, I always pray for clarity, direction and peace as I seek guidance and comfort to guide me through. The wilderness is not generally a fun place to be. However, I have found it to be a place where I feel the closest to God because it makes me depend entirely on Him. It reminds me I am not in control even though there are times when I certainly feel like I am. It removes all of my ambitions, motivations and priorities and leaves me with nothing but Him and the great unknown before me.
Like I said, it is not a fun place to be, but it is an incredible place to experience once I finally make it to the other side. The revelation of seeing all of the little steps coming together to guide me out of the wilderness is a testament of faith, hope and trust. It’s a wild journey but it is one that will strengthen and embolden your faith. It will make you a different person, in the best way possible. And, chances are good that one trip through the wilderness will teach you how to persevere and will prepare you for the next time around (and the time after that…and the time after that…) when you find yourself thrown back into the wild.
So friend, wherever you are right now in your story be encouraged that God is still writing it. He is the author of your life (Psalm 139:13-16) and Jesus is the perfecter of your faith (Hebrews 12:2). The Holy Spirit is with you throughout the thick and thin, highs and lows, clear roads, detours, foggy delays, and rugged side streets. You are never alone.
You can fearlessly step into the wild because you know who goes before you. God will never let you down because He only has what is best for you. Even when things don’t make sense right now, trust that they will…in due time…eventually. There is purpose in every place we travel and sometimes the stops that are not on our map are the ones we end up treasuring the most.
“and You refresh my life.You are true to Your name,
and You lead me along the right paths.” ~ Psalm 23:3 (CEV)
“I am doing something brand new, something unheard of. Even now it sprouts and grows and matures. Don’t you perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and open up flowing streams in the desert.” ~ Isaiah 43:19 (TPT)