Out of the Wilderness

 Do not be afraid or discouraged, 
for the LORD will personally go ahead of you.
He will be with you;
he will neither fail you
nor abandon you.
Deuteronomy 31:8 NLT

The dense rain forest surrounded us as though we were in an Indiana Jones movie. Mosquitoes buzzed past my ears so quickly my feeble attempts to swat them were fruitless and tired me. A diverse choir of birds performed a cacophonous cantata; and other, unknown sounds, came from deeper in the forest. I buried my face in the back of the man in front of me, holding onto his cloak with both hands, looking neither to the left nor the right, and certainly not behind. There was no path ahead of us other than the one forged by my companion.  He was an obvious expert with a machete. I was amazed to see a path beneath my feet.  It had not been there before but was now clear and level just beneath us.

As though sensing my wonder, Yeshua, turning his head just enough to speak to me, drowning out all the other sounds of the forest. “It is I who prepare the way. I make the path straight and narrow. I go before you and I will never leave you or forsake you. Know this and remember!”

The forest disappeared and I was enveloped by soft white cotton, doves cooing softly in the early morning sun. I pulled the sheets to my chin, turned toward my large picture window, and settled into the pillow top mattress to watch the sun rise over the trees.  The morning light banished the flamingo pink clouds turning them a bright white. It was late, but I lay there, staring out the window, while I contemplated the excursion to the rain forests with Jesus.  

Every part of me resonated that this was not just any dream.  What is this about, Lord?

“Know and Remember.”

The words floated through the air like the early morning mist evaporating from the wooden fence posts outside my window.   I knew without doubt when he said, “I go before you” he was also saying, “I have gone, I am going, and I will go.”

I have had many opportunities since that day to know and remember those words. There have been days, weeks, or months even, when I had no idea where I was going. The vegetation was dense, and the unknown frightened me like the mysterious scary sounds in the deep forest. The path seemed unclear, insurmountable, or even impossible.

It is during these times all I need do is lay hold of the cloak of my savior.  He is leaps and bounds a better survivalist than Bear Grylls.  So, I look only upon him, and follow in the path step by step he has prepared for me.

It is probable I will face these forests again and keep facing them until I am no longer living in this body. But I also know and remember this: I may not see the end of the path, but I see clearly my savior as I hold to him and follow in his steps.

Have you faced a time in which you felt as though you were lost in a rain forest? How did you find your way through?

Are you there now? You are NOT alone.  And Jesus will not leave you stranded naked and afraid.  He is there!  He goes before you and has your back all at the same time.  (Told ya, ‘better than Bear Grylls’).  Grab hold of Him.  He will take you through.

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