Namaqualand is an arid region of 177,000 square miles in Namibia and South Africa, up the Atlantic coast from Cape Town. It’s an arid kind of desert area, but when the Spring rains come, something spectacular happens, it explodes in flowering beauty. It becomes an international tourist attraction as yellow and white daisies along with hundreds of other flowers burst forth into color.
1 The wilderness and the wasteland shall be glad for them,
And the desert shall rejoice and blossom as the rose;
2 It shall blossom abundantly and rejoice,
Even with joy and singing.
The glory of Lebanon shall be given to it,
The excellence of Carmel and Sharon.
They shall see the glory of the Lord,
The excellency of our God.
Here is a verbal picture of people living in a dry and desolate climate, waiting, crying out for life, hope and freedom from the darkness. A place of dryness, a place of oppression and heat, a place of parched-ness and panting for water; a deer struggling to stay alive. It’s the kind of heat that you can feel just reading about it if you have ever been there.
You ever been in the desert? I mean have you ever been where it is really hot?
My wife and I took a sabbatical last summer that included a motorcycle trip from Richmond, Kentucky to L.A., then north to San Francisco, up to Portland, Oregon, then over to Pendleton, down to Twin Fall, Idaho, then up to Challis for a spell. It was a big trip. It was awesome.
NEEDLES, CALIF. “20 feet from hell, 2 miles from water”
The trip was great except for the part where we went from Kingman, Arizona to Needles, California. We were in the desert. No, I mean we were in the DESERT!! We rolled into Needles and the temp on the sign was 120 degrees. Needles is about the size of my back tire, and why anyone would live there is beyond me. It is hot, dry and oppressive. The highway for 4 hours had been hot, sticky and a little slippery. I have never been that hot in my life!
This is the kind of parched I think of when I read this passage from Isaiah. Sometimes our souls find themselves in places of wilderness and wasteland. When we think our lives don’t count any more. When we believe a lie that says, “God doesn’t care about you.” It’s a hard place to be. It’s a place where you cry out for God to speak to you, to say something, anything.
Where are you God?
This is the picture of King David in Psalm 42
1 As the deer pants for the water brooks,
So pants my soul for You, O God. 2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.
When shall I come and appear before God? 3 My tears have been my food day and night,
While they continually say to me, “Where is your God?”
Has your soul ever been so hot that you wonder if God cares,
or knows, or is even there?
I want to encourage you today. I felt compelled to write this to you.
God is listening.
God is watching and
God is wanting to change your life.
He is bringing the spring rain to your soul.
The God of the universe is about to let the rains of heaven fall on your life so that it begins to burst into color like the Namaqualand.
Even now it springs up do you not perceive it?
What do you have to lose?
You don’t have to believe me, really, that is ok. God still believes in you. He hears your cry even when you don’t believe in him.
Today, ask him to reveal himself to you. Go ahead, ask him to show himself so you can believe.
You have nothing to lose except that dry barren desert of a soul.
All he wants to do is make it bloom in beauty, his way, his power, he is LOVE.