The Desert of Judah

 “My soul thirsts for you….in a dry and weary land where there is no water.” Psalm 63:1, NIV)

In our Bible we are told that David wrote this Psalm, celebrating the joy he found in fellowship with God while he was in the desert of Judah.

“Did you say, ‘The Desert of Judah?’”

Yes.

“Isn’t Judah a part of the Promised Land?”

Yes.

So, are you telling me that there is a Desert we have to traverse in the Promised Land?”

Yes.

David not only traversed the Desert of Judah; he sang praises to God while there! Commenting on this Spurgeon wrote, “David did not leave off singing because he was in the wilderness, neither did he in slovenly idleness go on repeating Psalms intended for other occasions. Rather, he carefully made his worship suitable to his circumstances, and presented to his God a wilderness hymn when he was in the wilderness.”

“God, you are my God, earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you, my body longs for you, in a dry and weary land where there is no water. I have seen you in the sanctuary and beheld your power and your glory. Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you. I will praise you as long as I live, and in your name I will lift up my hands.” (Psalm 63:1~4, NIV).

This Song is interesting for many reasons.david gives praise

First, it encompasses present, past and future. David says, “God, you are my God, earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you, my body longs for you, in a dry and weary land where there is no water.”

That was his present condition when He wrote the song. He was faced with the difficulty of dryness, yet he did not lose sight of the fact that God was his God. This is a present tense relationship. Perhaps your own season of dryness should be characterized with a similar confession of faith: “God, You are my God.” It is, after all, the truth.

Then David says, “I have seen you in the sanctuary and beheld your power and your glory.” This is past tense. There was a time, glorious and unforgettable, when David beheld the beauty of the Lord and inquired in His holy Temple; a time when he danced with all his might and worshipped in the beauty of holiness. It is good to remind ourselves during the dry times of just what we have seen and known of the Lord in times past.

Can you recall a time when the Lord’s Presence was real and near; a time when you were enthusiastic in worship and service? That time was valid; and your present dryness does not negate the gains that were made for Christ when the river flowed freely. Just because you are dry does not mean you are dead. Pause for a moment and reflect upon those life-impacting encounters you have had with the Lord in the past. Let their memory be the momentum that carries you forward through this valley.

And then David looks in faith to the future when he writes, “Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you. I will praise you as long as I live, and in your name I will lift up my hands.” This future hope shows us that we go through the dry times; we are not left in them. A better day is coming; the Lord will not leave me in this dry and weary land where there is no water.

Start singing praise, O child of God; for the Lord is with you nevertheless!

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