• Tonie Roberts

SANDSTORM by Louisa Guzman

Gran Canaria, one of Spain's Canary Islands, is situated right off the coast of West Africa, so strong winds often blow sand onto the island and forms dunes on the mini desert area known as Maspalomas.

You can literally walk through it and feel like you're in the Sahara. But just like in actual deserts, if you continue walking for a few minutes, you'll stumble upon one of the island's most beautiful beaches.

Well, this year has felt like that in reverse. Last year was like being on the breathtaking Maspalomas beach: the sun warmed me, the breeze soothed me, and the sound of the waves reminded me of God's constant presence.

Then 2020 came crashing in: the wind and sand blinded me, I was stripped of all I knew, and left to trek barefoot through the hot desert with no camel or water in sight and nothing but a face covering that I was told would keep away the death causing elements.

It's been almost 4 months since Covid19 overturned our lives. 4 months is nothing but it has seemed like a lifetime because of all the alterations we've had to make. But that's what God's timing is like - a day can be like a year and sometimes we need that time to think, process what God is saying, and make necessary changes in our lives. In Maspalomas Gran Canaria, you are only walking in the desert for a short time before you reach a gorgeous beach. But sometimes God's plan requires us to tread through the desert a little longer.

In the Bible, the desert represents a season of learning, and sometimes a season of trial or testing. During the desert years what is familiar to us is stripped away so that we can focus on and draw closer to God.

After Paul met Jesus on the road to Damascus, he went to live in the desert for 3 years (Galatians 1:17-18).That's a long time to be in the desert but that's the amount of time God required him to be there in order to change and prepare him for ministry. When Paul returned, he was eager and excited about sharing his testimony and God's word with everyone.

We are all tired of socially distancing and long to get back to normal. But Covid isn't over yet. We might need to remain in the desert a little longer. So make the most of your desert journey. Spend time with Jesus on that sandy trek. Remember that God provided manna for the Israelites when they were in the desert (Psalms 78:24, John 6:31) - He will also equip you with daily provisions to get you through this sandstorm.

Whether this lasts a few more weeks or a few more months, make sure that in the end you'll come out changed and renewed and ready to share your testimony of all God did for you on this journey.


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