God must sometimes move us out of our comfort zone, in order to prepare us for the next phase of our journey with Him. I have found myself in this position for the past couple of months, as God closed one door in my life that I had grown very accustomed to. I had become very successful in my career, fairly well-known and respected in my field, and could almost do it on auto-pilot. I still very much enjoyed it as well, yet I knew God was preparing me for something new. When the time for change came, it was painful to leave, but necessary. I would have stayed in my “sweet spot”, but would have missed God’s “next” for me. I had to leave the comfort zone.
In the book of Exodus, Moses, a Hebrew, had been raised in the Egyptian royal palace, the lap of luxury. He could have stayed there, in comfort and splendor, but God had other plans. Namely, the rescue of the very people Moses had become removed from. So through a set of circumstances, God had Moses driven from the the land of the Pharaohs, to the land of Midian, the “back side of the desert.” From the palace to the dirt, from a prince to a sheep herder. There he stayed for years, as God prepared him for the grand adventure to come- leading His people from bondage to freedom.
I have felt like I’m dwelling in the “land of Midian” lately, knowing God led me here, but feeling as though I am “running to stand still.” And yet I am finding a greater sense of God’s presence and purpose in this time, have seen His daily provision and answers to prayer, and I am learning to trust Him more than ever before. Seth Barnes in his book, “Kingdom Journeys”, makes this rich statement- “At the point where God is all you have, He will become all you need.” When we are willing to abandon the past, lay down the tools that have brought us success and security, when we are willing to be broken and remade, and we come to greater dependence on our Father for “our daily bread”, He will lead us deeper in our intimacy with Him, and use us to do greater things for the Kingdom than we ever could have imagined.
Midian is an uncomfortable place, but the place where God does His best work in us. And it’s where He prepares to do His best work through us. I will stay in the desert as long as necessary, letting my God prepare me for the “next.”