A Word to those who feel hot, dry, and barren
By Kathie Walters

Have you ever been in a desert?

I was once on a bus going across the desert in Egypt. About 1:30pm the bus broke down.

It was HOT and DRY and BARREN!

I canít remember what happened, except that mercifully, another bus came after a while. There was nothing there in this desert except sand, sand and more sand.

Is He going to kill me?

Someone gave me a word one time, - "God is going to speak to you in the desert." I thought God was going to kill me. I remembered the desert. Then I heard a message about the wilderness.

"Oh God," I thought, "Now Heís going to leave me and let me wander around all alone for months or years." I was busy ministering for God, and God was moving and people were being touched and our ministry was going great. It was a puzzle and a bit annoying. It looked like God was going to interfere with my ministry?

Why God takes us through desert places?

Why does God sometimes draw us into a desert, wilderness place? Is it a punishment? Kind of like standing a child in the corner? Maybe He wants to see if we can survive or not? Or a test!

Letís take a look around the desert wilderness place. Youíre right, thereís nothing there. Great! What now?

Well guess what? Thereís someone coming toward you? Thereís something about Him that is pulling on your heartstrings. 
He has all your attention now Ė there's nothing else there to distract you.

"I will allure her and bring her into the wilderness and speak comfortably to her, and she shall sing there."

"Until You've Learned to Sing in the Wilderness. . ."

An old man of God I know said this to me one day, "Until youíve learned to sing in the wilderness, youíve never learned to sing at all." So, now, this man in the desert has got your attention Ė and you remember a few things you kind of forgot.

Well you didnít actually forget-- itís just that they got pushed into the background of your life.

Who is this man?

This man in the wilderness - He is incredibly beautiful, His eyes especially. They seem like a fire and piercing. And what great love Ė and He is so tender and gracious. You remember! He is the Lord!

As you melt, a spirit of worship comes and thankfulness and great joy. "Where have you been?" He asks. Ouch! "Well I was busy in your kingdom, doing things for you." As soon as you said it, you realized it didnít matter Ė it was YOU he was interested in, not what you did. He seems so focused on you. He loves YOU!


In verse 16 God says, "In that day you will call me ISHI .. A prophetic term for "Close relationship."


He wants to remind you that He desires a close relationship with you. You are not only a servant but you are His beloved. Thereís something Heís been trying to tell you too. Some new direction, something about renewing some relationships that you didnít have time for, or thought you didnít. Some different areas of ministry maybe.

You might be in a desert, but the desert doesnít have to be in you. Jesus said there are springs of water in you, "springing up into everlasting life" (Jn 4:14). The springs begin to well up, and praise and adoration flows out of you. Before you know it the springs are watering everything around you. You see things differently, you feel differently about people you didnít notice before.

Growing Roses

When Jesus shows up the wilderness Ė the wilderness disappears. The desert starts growing flowers. Whoever heard of Roses in the desert?

". ..And the desert shall blossom like as a Rose. It shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice even with joy and singing " (Is.35:1-2).

You know when Peter and Paul were shut up in the INNER prison (that's a prison inside a prison) with the cats and rats and terrible smells, they invited Jesus in. Well they shouted and praised and sang to Him. I guess He took that as an invitation!

When He showed up though - the prison doors burst open and the locks and bars fell apart. There was an angel there also who led them OUT. There is no place that is closed to Him if He decides to enter. Whether it's the prison or the uttermost depths of the sea. Or, the heights of heaven, "for there your hand shall lead me" (see Ps 139 -7-9).

Your Prison Cannot Hide You From Him

Your desert cannot keep Him away - your prison cannot hide you from Him - He said, "I will never leave you nor forsake you." (Heb 13:5).

"Then shall the lame man leap as a hart, and the tongue of the dumb sing. For in the wilderness shall waters break
out, and streams in the desert. And the parched ground shall become a pool, and the thirsty land springs of water." (Is.35:6-7)

That happens when the water of life flows out of you Ė and it flows as you respond to Him.

"ISHI" means you have close relationship with HIM. The Beloved is here - touching the very springs of life in you. 
"My Beloved is mine and I am His.." (Song. 2:16).

Thereís a sweet aroma now in the desert, like sweet apples. Flowers of praises, blossoms of thanksgiving. Itís a beautiful place. . .

Wait! "Who is this coming out from the wilderness, leaning on her Beloved?" She looks as if she's in love (Song 8:5). Why, itís someone beautiful Ė I do believe --- itís YOU!

Kathie Walters -