After my parents moved to the Arizona desert from Illinois, my father frequently talked about the beauty of the desert. The first time we visited them I wondered why anyone would want to live in that God-forsaken part of the country!! There was hardly anything green…just rocks and sand. The mountains were pretty but they hardly made up for the rest of the landscape. Over time though, I learned to appreciate the beauty of the desert. It has a beauty of its own and I was able to agree with my father’s assessment of the desert. My visit this past week was no different. I really enjoyed looking at the desert scenery.
A while back I mentioned a video by Ray Vander Laan which was given to us by a friend (“Walking with God in the Desert.”) As my brother and I went walking through the desert and through the ancient Indian areas, I recalled parts of the video. Vander Laan highlighted Israel’s walk through the desert speaking of God’s special desert provisions of streams of living water, shade from the overbearing sun, and occasional nourishing greenery. Indeed, my brother and I found water, shade, and greenery out in the middle of the desert. Even in the 105 degree heat of that day, we saw rabbits and other wildlife. The desert not only has a beauty of its own; it has a wonderment of its own.
I suppose it takes a particular perspective to see the beauty of the desert and its wonderment. Likewise, it takes a particular perspective to see the beauty and wonderment of our own lives and the people around us. It’s good to periodically ponder the life we live so as to analyze whether we are seeing it the way it really is. Too often, we view life viewed from the consequences of our interactions… thus creating God-forsaken deserts in our own minds/lives. The reality of life is full of beauty and even our personal deserts have water, shade, nourishment, and greenery. We just have to see it.