Deuteronomy 8:2-5 (MSG)
“Remember every road that God led you on for those forty years in the wilderness, pushing you to your limits, testing you so that he would know what you were made of, whether you would keep his commandments or not. He put you through hard times. He made you go hungry. Then he fed you with manna, something neither you nor your parents knew anything about, so you would learn that men and women don’t live by bread only; we live by every word that comes from God’s mouth. Your clothes didn’t wear out and your feet didn’t blister those forty years. You learned deep in your heart that God disciplines you in the same ways a father disciplines his child.”
Wilderness times are the hardest times we will face and it seems there are wilderness periods in different areas of our lives at various times.
They can be long and intense like the 40 years the Israelites experienced or short seasons of physical or emotional lack.
Whatever the case, it is a spiritual training ground. It is a place where we no longer rely on our surroundings, our religion, our leaders, our finances or our wisdom but we are completely dependent upon God and His Word. We are pushed to limits in our faith and consequently trust will increase during the wilderness time.
Through these hard times we become aware of God’s discipline if we learn not to fight but embrace it.
We can rely on Him because we have personally experienced His faithfulness. Now we even have a testimony to share with others to encourage them.
Jesus relied on this Scripture by quoting it in His wilderness time when the devil tried to tempt Him out of what God needed Him to go through. “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’ Matthew 4:4b (NKJV)