“… the Holy Spirit compelled Jesus to go into the wilderness.”
Mark 1:12 NLT
Over the next forty days, I am planning to go on a spiritual expedition. A spiritual experiment of sorts. Not a forty day fast. Nor a forty day retreat, but forty days of preparation. Forty days from today marks the weekend before Thanksgiving. The weekend after Thanksgiving will mark the forty days of Advent.
As the end of this year approaches, I am surprised by an invitation to continue to rest. I started out the year with a forty day Sabbath, seeking to be ready for what I hoped would be a new season of encouraging women in my home. I wanted to offer a place to retreat and be refreshed by God. This vision birthed out of my own desire to practice more solitude in the midst of a world that distracts so easily.
Even last year, this desire was growing. I wrote about it in a journal entry dated: Tuesday, June 22, 2011.
“…but what I really want is my life to matter. To enjoy what I have—to share what I have with others. Out of the overflow of this…I long to invite women to retreat and be refreshed, renewed and restored.”
By now, I thought I would be offering day retreats in my home to weary souls. Yet God in his ability to see beyond my thoughts has invited me to wait in His presence. To soak in His Word and rely on Him as the Spirit moves me into this “wilderness” season.
Jesus was led into the wilderness for forty days. We know that part of the purpose was a testing, but I think mostly it was a time of preparation. And that is the specific purpose that leads me to a season of staying home more, reading more and praying with intention to discover and develop ideas that have been whirling around my heart, soul and mind. To test them, and see if this is the direction God would have me to go.
Pray for me as I embark on this expedition. You may hear more musings about it here. Who knows? I just know that I must follow hard after Jesus, and trust Him to lead me on into New Frontiers.
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