The children of Israel left Egypt and wandered 40 years in the desert wilderness before entering Canaan (the Promised Land). The journey should not have taken anywhere near this length of time. So why did it? God made a covenant with Abraham long before the trip; therefore, victory was promised before the Israelites even set out for the land of milk and honey. So again why did they struggle for 40 years?
As Christians, how often do we find ourselves in a 40 year mode? We journey for weeks, months, years...pressing on and on all the while God is trying to get our attention and show us the way. If we aren’t careful we find ourselves missing out on the good things God has in store for us all the while wandering through the wilderness.
The definition of wilderness is an “in-between place.” It is the staging area for what is to come. To keep ourselves from falling into the 40 year mentality mode we must renew our minds. We must think as God thinks. To check ourselves we can ask the following questions: “What are the thoughts I am dwelling on day to day? Am I living a life that gets me to the Promised Land in days or years?” If you have been struggling for some time, maybe even years, perhaps you have fallen in to the wrong mindset. You see if you are stuck in a sour mindset, then your life is going to produce sour fruit. Just as if you are always focusing on the negative, no matter how in tune with God you are, you will continually fall short of entering the Promised Land that God has for you.
If you find yourself in a continuous state of wilderness then begin to renew your mind. Remember what God says about you in Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you; plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.” That verse alone shows us that God does not want us wandering around the wilderness never reaching our Promised Land! God will meet us where we are—no matter how many times we have messed up in the past God never goes back on His promise and is always there to see us through. God wants all of His children to enter the Promised Land and He wants all of us to enter into the covenant He has with us.
Your Promised Land could be renewing of a marriage or family, salvation for your children, being set free of bondage from illness or the opinion of others, or an all around freedom of negative thinking in general. God’s covenant with Abraham promised us victory in every situation in our life. The victory belongs to us, Jesus paid it all and we must claim that victory. Only God knows what our Promised Land is and we simply have to line up our thinking with His to reach it. The wilderness is the last step before entering into the harvest, but our minds will dictate how long this final step will last.