To prepare His children for their high purpose in life, God may use a difficult wilderness experience to help prepare them. Recall how Moses, David, and even Jesus the Messiah began their careers out in a wilderness. The term “wilderness” points to agonizing preparation for service. The Apostle Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians Ch 11 about his on-the-job wilderness experiences. He said, “I have worked harder, been put in prison more often, been whipped times without number … I have faced danger in the cities, in the deserts, and on the seas. And I have faced danger from men who claim to be believers but are not. I have worked hard and long, enduring many sleepless nights. I have been hungry and thirsty and have often gone without food. I have shivered in the cold, without enough clothing to keep me warm.” Paul’s bitter experiences enabled him to serve Christ with integrity. Few of us seek difficulty, yet mature believers know that our paths to spiritual growth may pass through rough places. We know God is faithful. He will not let us face trials alone. He comforts and guides us to victory.

Dr. Melvin E. Banks, Sr.

Dr. Melvin E. Banks, Sr. is the founder and chairman of UMI (Urban Ministries, Inc.). Under his direction, UMI has grown to be a leading publisher of Christian education resources for churches in the African American community. Read More

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