Devotions

Water in the Wilderness

By Mary Loudermilk
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The oppressed and the poor look for water, but there is none; their tongues are parched from thirst. I, the LORD, will respond to their prayers; I, the God of Israel, will not abandon them. I will make streams flow down the slopes and produce springs in the middle of the valleys. I will turn the desert into a pool of water and the arid land into springs” (Isaiah 41:17-18, New English Translation).

When Moses led the Israelites out of Egypt, he faced a nearly impossible task. While seventy souls entered Egypt, 400 years later the children of Israel numbered possibly two million. Food, water, and shelter for seventy in harsh desert conditions would be challenging, but consider how difficult it would be to provide for hundreds of thousands plus all their animals. It didn’t take long before Moses had some very unhappy, complaining people on his hands. With no water how could they even exist?

“But the people were very thirsty there for water, and they murmured against Moses and said, ‘Why in the world did you bring us up out of Egypt – to kill us and our children and our cattle with thirst?’” (Exodus 17:3, NET).

It’s easy to complain when we are in a dry, difficult place. We’ve probably all grumbled and whined at some point in our walk with God. Yet good things can happen during a wilderness experience when God is there with us. When the Israelites thought things impossible, God stepped in to supply over and above their needs. He didn’t just provide a trickle of water or even a small stream. What good would that have done for so many people? He made it like rivers flowing in the desert. Psalm 78:15 says:

“He broke open rocks in the wilderness, and gave them enough water to fill the depths of the sea. He caused streams to flow from the rock, and made the water flow like rivers” (NET).

When we feel stranded in a dry, barren place, desperate for answers, He offers hope. God’s Word assures us He will respond to our prayers and will not abandon us in our situation. Don’t despair; rivers can flow in the desert. Trust Him to provide above and beyond every need.

Prayer: Lord, thank You for meeting me in my place of need. When I walk through the wilderness, You are there to guide me and turn my dry desert into a flowing river. You nourish my soul and satisfy my thirst.

 

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Mary enjoys traveling, meeting new people, and spending time with old friends. Although directionally challenged, she would rather take the back roads with their discoveries than the boredom of the interstate.

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