Last week we talked about how walking away from sexual sin can feel like walking into desert – and why this is necessary. If you missed that post, you can read it now here. I closed last week’s post by saying that only in battle can we rid the land of the enemy.
We must let the desert train us for this battle.
God is available for intimacy with you. True, lasting, committed intimacy. He knows you, sees into you. He comes into you and allows you into Him. He knows who you really are. And here’s where the desert comes into His love. He knows who you really are, and He knows what you’re capable of. If you’ll let Him, He will show you.
There is much you do not yet know about who you are and what you’re capable of. Perhaps you do not know you can make it without pornography, that you can leave it forever. He knows, and He wants to show you in the desert. Perhaps you don’t yet know you can walk away from an opportunity to lust. He knows, and He wants to show you. Perhaps you don’t yet know that within your chest, there is a heart that views an opportunity to lust more as an opportunity to suffer for your King by remaining true to Him in the face of His enemy.
Perhaps you do not yet see in yourself the capacity to love when faced with temptation.
He sees this in you because He made you. He will take you through the desert to get you there.
The world, the flesh and the devil do not want you to remember that strength and endurance are built only through suffering. Muscle is not strengthened without using the muscle beyond the level it is currently being used. When the enemy suggests you cannot bear something, it is because he is afraid you will become one who can.
If we’ll let it, the desert trains us, changes us, forms us.
And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified. What then shall we say to these things? If God is fore us, who is against us? (Romans 8:28 – 31)
As those accustomed to the unreal, we are likely not to see in the desert that things are changing slowly within us, our old ways of doing things are being stripped away, character is being built, muscles are being strengthened, our senses are being heightened, purity is developing, and love . . . love is being formed. We are becoming the men Christ redeemed us to be.
A discussion question for you: in what ways are your muscles being strengthened this week? Comment your thoughts below.