God With Us In & Through Our Wilderness
Matthew 1:23. Look! “The virgin will conceive a child! “She’ll give birth to a son, “they will call Him Immanuel, which means God is with us.”
LAST WEEK: We may enjoy God on the mountaintops, but we get to know Him intimately in the valleys. God never ever promised that you would never go through the valley. He promised you would never have to go through the valley alone.
Sometimes we find ourselves in a wilderness in life;
– A place of Wandering aimlessly – getting nowhere
– A place of Hunger and Thirst – no provisions
– A place of Isolation – no companionship or support
– A place of Sorrow and Defeat – no Joy and Victory
– A place of Pressure – no peace or relief
– A place of Hopelessness – no future prospects
Life brings all of us wilderness experiences.
The wilderness, a real dark night of the soul, can bring loneliness, self-doubt, questioning and despair.
The truth is that not a day goes by that we, as believers, are not in need of God’s grace and peace.
Every morning, as Believers, we need the Holy Spirit to fill us again, to strengthen us for what’s ahead.
Remember this truth: for as it was true then, it is true now “God met them where they were.” “God meets us where we are.”
Adrian Rogers: “The important thing is not that you know; the important thing is that God knows and that you follow Him.”
When we leave the battles in his hands, He can do what would be impossible for us to ever accomplish on our own.
1. The way to our promised land is not always easy, in fact, it rarely is. But it’s worth it. “To get to the City of Refuge, you had to travel through the Valley of Tears.”
Exodus 13:18 (NLT)So God led them in a roundabout way through the wilderness toward the Red Sea. Thus the Israelites left Egypt like an army ready for battle.
Exodus 13:17 (NLT)When Pharaoh finally let the people go, God did not lead them along the main road that runs through Philistine territory, even though that was the shortest route to the Promised Land. God said, “If the people are faced with a battle, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.”
2. In Our Wilderness Wanderings, God will make a way where there doesn’t seem to be a way.
Exodus 13:18 (NLT)So God led them in a roundabout way through the wilderness toward the Red Sea.
Their eyes focused on the problem, not the bigness of their God.
Don Moen “God Will Make A Way”
God will make a way, Where there seems to be no way He works in ways we cannot see He will make a way for me He will be my guide, Hold me closely to His side With love and strength for each new day He will make a way, He will make a way. “In Christ God is with us!”
3. In Our Wilderness Wanderings,God will lead us day and night.
Exodus 13:21 (ESV) And the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of cloud to lead them along the way, and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, that they might travel by day and by night.
His presence was always there, a reminder to them that they hadn’t been left on their own in the wilderness.
We may not see him in a pillar of cloud or fire these days, but we have his Word, and the Holy Spirit to give guidance to our days.
4. God fights on behalf of his people
Exodus 14:19–20 (ESV) Then the angel of God who was going before the host of Israel moved and went behind them, and the pillar of cloud moved from before them and stood behind them, 20 coming between the host of Egypt and the host of Israel. And there was the cloud and the darkness. And it lit up the night without one coming near the other all night.
Luke 1:37 (ESV) For nothing will be impossible with God.” He gives us victory and power even when it doesn’t seem possible or make sense.
Exodus 17:15–16 (NLT) Moses built an altar there and named it Yahweh-nissi (which means “the Lord is my banner”). 16He said, “They have raised their fist against the Lord’s throne, so now the Lord will be at war with Amalek generation after generation.”
Still today, God will send his angels to fight for us and guard us. He Himself will fight for us and guard us.
It doesn’t mean we won’t ever face the battle, but we can know that He is sure with us right in the midst of it all.
Exodus 14:14 “The Lord will fight for you, you need only to be still.”
5. In Our Wilderness Wanderings, God provides in miraculous ways
Exodus 16:4 Then the Lord said to Moses, “I will rain down bread from heaven for you. The people are to go out each day and gather enough for that day… .
Exodus 17:6 (CSB)I am going to stand there in front of you on the rock at Horeb; when you hit the rock, water will come out of it and the people will drink.” Moses did this in the sight of the elders of Israel.
His provision and blessing, they never run dry.
Philippians 4:19 (CSB) And my God will supply all your needs according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. In Christ God with us in our needs.
6. Sin will always take us farther than we want to go.
Exodus 32:9 “I have seen these people, ‘the Lord said to Moses, ‘and they are a stiff-necked people…”
What starts as complaining, grumbling, hearts going astray, leads us deeper into pathways we wished we’d never entered.
7. In Our Wilderness Wanderings, We may feel forgotten and left on our own, but God is always with us.
Exodus 33:14 (CSB) And he replied, “My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.”
God’s presence is powerful and strong. It is never dependent on how good we are, He is faithful even in our hardest struggles.
“The hardest struggles we face have the greatest potential to teach us patience and endurance.”
The God of miracles fights for you today, and he will never let you go.