And he was in the wilderness forty days being tempted by Satan. And he was with the wild animals, and the angels were ministering to him.
~ Mark 1:13, LEB ~
Jesus Christ was led out into the wilderness by the Holy Spirit. This occurred after His baptism. As we come to read, and understand, the Savior fasted and prayed. He was also tempted of the adversary. Not only tempted, he also was ministered by heavenly angels. There is significant understanding many of us may miss, and it has to do with the spiritual truth and application that applies to our own lives today. When we come unto Christ. Willing to faithfully walk in obedience to follow Him and His teachings. When we commit ourselves over to denying self and taking up our cross to become His disciples – in order to live a deep and meaningful and mindful crucified Christian life – we are driven out into the spiritual wilderness where we will be tested. Our faith, confidence, assurance, and commitment will be tested.
If our faith is not tested it becomes weak, lacks power, and becomes dead. This leaves us vulnerable to the elements of everyday life. Today, our Heavenly Father continues to test us. It is not always for punishment and correction – it is to see how we commit ourselves over to seeking Him, praise and worship Him, and honor Him through our sacrifice and faithful obedience to His will and commandments.
Are you overwhelmed with bitterness, regret, shame, guilt, anger, rebellion and disobedience? The world holds no promise of peace in this life. It may offer what it calls peace. It may offer the wealth and prestige of the world. However, we ultimately end up losing our own lives for the sake of the worldly desires and comforts.
This is because we are frail, fallible, imperfect in our humanity and mortal existence. Most of us are quick to find any excuse not to face our trials and tribulations. Many of us attempt to find a human solution and reasoning to the temptations we face in life. Or some of us fall prey to the temptations and justify our own actions, attitudes and behaviors regarding transgression and sin.
Living a mindful crucified Christian life is one that is not easy. It is not merely a means of confession and profession of faith. Anyone is capable of confessing and professing Christ as their Lord and Savior. It is easy to proclaim one is born again and has tasted the new birth. Furthermore, many even proudly claim they are a new creation in Christ. Yet, when it comes to experience the wilderness of testing their faith – they wilt away. They faint and give up. And such faith that is not tested and refined is that which cannot be trusted.
However, when we seek our Heavenly Father, willing to count the cost and commit our lives over to His will and care for us – we find that strength and courage to face the temptations encountered in our own spiritual wilderness. We welcome and embrace the refiners fire and know that we shall not grow weary or faint. We are not willing to give up because our Heavenly Father knows we are able to overcome. And it is through Jesus Christ.
So, how are we ministered to? How are we nourished? Specifically, when we feel alone, abandoned, neglected, or under attack? First, we recognize our trust in Christ, and therefore our trust in Heavenly Father, is what gives us the power, authority, courage, and strength to face whatever challenges we are called to face. Second, when we consistently devote to reading, studying, and applying the scriptures – we gain confidence and rest in the teachings and spiritual truths that our Heavenly Father reveals to our own hearts and minds. Third, Our Heavenly Father will impress upon others to come into our lives and speak wisely, offer words of encouragement, and bring much needed fellowship. And in those instances – He may even send heavenly messengers to help us – His faithful servants in times of significant and serious trials.
Christ faced the adversary while in the wilderness for forty days. So, too we shall be able to face the adversary in our own spiritual wilderness. It is part of us growing in spirit and truth. It is part of our process of becoming spiritually perfect. It is part of us growing in faith.
Today’s Thought and Meditation
Coming unto Christ and living a mindful and meaningful crucified Christian life means we acknowledge the reality that our faith is going to be tested. And we must come to the understanding that without our faith being tested – we are not properly trusting in Christ and the provisions of our Heavenly Father. Therefore, without a tested faith that endures and refined through trials and tribulations – it is not faith at all. We remain stagnant, spiritually depleted, empty, and unfulfilled.
Therefore, do not be afraid when you face trials and temptations. Stand strong, stand tall, and stand firm on the foundation of Jesus Christ and know that as he had overcome the temptations of the world – so to shall you overcome the temptations you shall face in life.
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