We left Jerusalem and headed south. Soon the buildings and concrete gave way to mountains and valleys of sand. The road rose, cut, and fell through the desert countryside. A storm erases any impression of a man or road, like turning over an Etch-a-Sketch. 

This Promised Land was called “the wilderness”. That term took on new meaning as I compared the sharp contrast between the city and sand. People lived in both.

A Bedouin family camped on the hillside. As the tour bus slowed down, children ran up begging for attention and food. What a shock. What a treat.  Some responded with food, some with money, most with photos. Not only did the Bedouins know the location of vegetation for their livestock, they also knew when the tourist buses would come. Both served to meet their needs.

Our professor described how the winds carry seeds and scatter them across the land. When the rains come, the barren hillside would spring to life with “the Rose of Sharon”, and “the Lily of the Valley”. This picture erased my first impression of the area.

Life in the city or in the wilderness are both barren without Christ. Could those in the sand survive the city? Could those in the city survive the sand? It’s not location, location, location. It’s relation, relation, relation. Both need the Water of Life.

“Some wandered in the desolate wilderness, finding no way to a city where they could live. They were hungry and thirsty; their spirits failed within them. Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble; He rescued them from their distress.”  Psalm 107:4-6 CSB