Five years ago would you have predicted that we were all to experience a global pandemic, that the threat of global warming would become a climate crisis complete with chaotic weather resulting in untold climate refugees, that a war would affect food supplies around the world causing more food insecurity than thought possible? In sum we've been through a lot! As the news cycle moves on and on, we face different but possibly no less disturbing challenges. How do we journey through the wilderness of our current context, and what can we learn from individuals throughout Scripture who found themselves in the literal wilderness?
This devotional series is designed in conjunction with the Lenten worship series called "A Table in the Wilderness" that we will be exploring at Covenant CRC Woodstock over the next six weeks.
Each week you will be provided with an image for reflection, prayers, a scripture reading and reflection questions.
Week One : A Table in the Wilderness for Jesus
The Temptation in the Wilderness by Briton Rivière, Public Domain, via Wikimedia Commons
O Lord, can you really spread a table in the wilderness of life? Walk with me as I walk this path of the cross with honest questions of life in my heart and my face turned to find the table you have spread in the wilderness for so many before me, and now also for me. Amen.
At that time, Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. Just as Jesus was coming up out of the water, he saw heaven being torn open and the Spirit descending on him like a dove. And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.” At once the Spirit sent him out into the wilderness, and he was in the wilderness forty days, being tempted by Satan. He was with the wild animals, and angels attended him (Mark 1:9–13).
Jesus’ baptism must have been a spiritual highlight for him. Why did the Spirit then immediately send him into the wilderness? What do I notice and feel as I look at this picture? How lonely and tempted am I? Can God really provide a table in the wilderness of loneliness and temptation?
Christ Speaks: Words of Encouragement
Take heart, my child. I will not let the cross you bear grow beyond your endurance. My Father attends you. He is your Father too. All that is needed God’s hands will provide.
We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you because by your life, your death, and your resurrection you have shown us how God always spreads a table in the wilderness in the face of all our fears. Amen
This devotional is adapted from a series provided by Pastor Natasha Vedder to Reformed Worship 146 © December 2022 Worship Ministries of the Christian Reformed Church. Used by permission.