Toward our Desert

Have you ever been to a desert area or just happened to pass by?

I do. I was in a group traveling from California to Las Vegas. I saw the hours of drive in the desert. Although, I have not seen any sand dunes. Just miles and miles of drylands.

Isn’t it amazing to see the long stretch of sand, dry mountains, desert bushes and cactus that survive in the desolate wilderness?

It fascinates me. Somehow, that fascination brought me to silence and reflection. It leads me to ask myself, “What is my desert experience? Have I found an oasis?”

We do have deserts in our life. Just to think of it is scary. There will be a pain, struggle, and self-confrontation.

However, it is by going into that desert that we emerge transformed. We ain’t aim for perfection. Nor becoming a prophet. We only desire to face our own devils that hunts us. Devils that keeps us from becoming more human. Devils that hinder us from building great relationships. Devils that make us think we are right at the expense of others.

Remember John the Baptist who stayed in the wilderness. Jesus who went into the desert and was tempted by the devil.

The Monastic Fathers who lived in the desert. Some even contemporary individuals lived in the desert. Most of them emerged with a deeper understanding of everything that is. A deeper understanding of who they are.

We do not have to go to the Sahara desert. There will be a time in our life that we feel like we are in the desert. Alone, helpless, vulnerable, confused, filled with anger or anxiety or felt unloved. Our deserts may pertain to our relationship, work, studies, family or carriers. Like a mother, who feel unappreciated. A child who felt unloved. A homeless who felt invaluable. A sick person who felt hopeless. A prisoner who felt hated by everyone.

When we are in the middle of that desert, there might be a sand storm and biting cold in the night. The venomous snakes and scorpions that can sting you to death. Remember, keep on moving forward. Make those bright stars in the night your source of hope and the brightness of the moon your guide in the darkness of night. Keep moving, appreciate the little things that come into your life. Be grateful of the shade a bush or a tree provides.

In the inner journey of your own desert, do not look for an oasis. You are the oasis. You are the miracle that exists. That is why you are loved and the Beloved.

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