On the third new moon after the people of Israel had gone out of the land of Egypt, on that day they came into the wilderness of Sinai. They set out from Rephidim and came into the wilderness of Sinai, and they encamped in the wilderness. There Israel encamped before the mountain, while Moses went up to God. The LORD called to him out of the mountain, saying, “Thus you shall say to the house of Jacob, and tell the people of Israel: You yourselves have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles' wings and brought you to myself.
I love the idea of God carrying his people on eagles' wings to get out of captivity and into the presence of the Lord. I had a vision of something really similar this past Saturday.
I typically think of Hosea 2:14-15 when I need to be comforted about the wilderness. However, a cross referece for verse 4 is Revelation 12:14. Verses 13-17 say,
And when the dragon saw that he had been thrown down to the earth, he pursued the woman who had given birth to the male child. But the woman was given the two wings of the great eagle so that she might fly from the serpent into the wilderness, to the place where she is to be nourished for a time, and times, and half a time. The serpent poured water like a river out of his mouth after the woman, to sweep her away with a flood. But the earth came to the help of the woman, and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed the river that the dragon had poured from his mouth. Then the dragon became furious with the woman and went off to make war on the rest of her offspring, on those who keep the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus. And he stood on the sand of the sea.
I love thinking about the wilderness as a place of nourishment. Often times, I see so much of the enemy's attacks in the wilderness and it's harder to see the nourishment. But, it's there. It's for our good.
Looking up the word wilderness, it is uncultivated. That resonated with my spirit. The Lord has to till and break up our hearts. That process is healing, but painful. And the result is a more cultivated heart, one that is cultivated for the Lord. A heart that is specially bred just for him. Wow.
The Lord brings us into the wild to bring us out of captivity and into freedom. Like Hosea says, he allures us there; he brings us there to restore our vineyards. We can see how he did this with the Israelites in Exodus.
Do we see it in our own lives?