Do you know what it’s like to be in a spiritual desert?
I do. I’ve been in one for several years.
As a teen and young adult, I used to feel very emotionally and spiritually close to God.
I was excited to go to church and to the youth group that met every week. In fact, church was probably my favorite place to be.
At times, I would almost devour my Bible. I could spend hours reading and praying. I had a goal of reading the whole Bible (which I never quite fulfilled).
And I loved worship. I loved the sense of spiritual closeness to God that I felt when singing worship music. It didn’t matter if I was by myself or at a formal gathering, I simply couldn’t get enough of it.
Isn’t it sad how growing up can cause you to lose that youthful enthusiasm?
It’s been a very long time since I’ve felt consistently close to God. Sure, I’ve found some oases (the plural of oasis) as I’ve wandered the desert. At times, I even thought the oasis was the jungle at the edge of the desert. But soon the water would dry up and I’d be back to wandering again.
The desert is a dry and empty place. It has a way of sucking the joy out of you. You start to grow apathetic. You find it hard to even care that you’re lost. After a while, it becomes the norm. You grow comfortable with the desert. You learn where to find just enough water and food to get by. You’re never truly fulfilled, but at least you’re doing something, even if it is just wandering in hopeless circles.