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Communion 2010

In the Wilderness

Originally scheduled for August 1

It’s a funny thing: Christians speak fondly of the “mountain top experience,” but rarely do you hear of the “desert experience.” Sometimes we have these, but we don’t like to talk about them. Christ was led into the wilderness by the Holy Spirit; we just want to find the shortest way out.

Why the desert? Well, the air is clear and clean; you can see things at a great distance. The colors are subtle; if you look, you will find that “red” is not a color but a palette. Night brings its own beauty; stars. In the creation you can see the Creator. Perhaps this crisp, stark beauty explains it. Christ spent forty days there before the devil came to tempt him.

We, on the other hand, hurry through the desert – and the desert experience. When we’re through, we don’t want to talk about it. Why?

·        The desert experience separates you from the blur of human life. To be with people is often to be apart from God, and we like being hidden in a crowd.

·        In the desert you can navigate by God’s lights. There are no billboards to tell you what to wear, what to eat, where to go and what to think.

·        The desert experience lets you see a long way – even to death. For some, you can see beyond death to eternity. A lot of us don’t want to see what eternity might bring.

Communion is a short version of the desert experience. It lets you see clearly – and you see that the sacrifice of Christ is far more important than your troubles, and his forgiveness far greater than your sins. It lets you see far ahead – beyond this life to Christ’s return; beyond that to all of eternity. If you allow it, you will see God’s beacons – the guiding stars of your life – clearly and in perspective.

Most of all, though, the desert is where you are alone with God. Take that time now, examine yourself – just you and God – and see not only what you are, but what he wants you to become. It is time for you to be with God – alone together.

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