Heroic Journey: The Wilderness Pt. 2

Post by Jared Hartenstien
After discussing adventure from 30,000 feet in our last series, we are now looking at the
 process of adventure. Each of our adventures consists of three stages: 
the Call, the Wilderness, and the Return. 
If you missed the previous weeks, check them out here.

Battling through the Wilderness

We battle through the Wilderness, when we decide to forge ahead, giving the true Author, our Heavenly Dad the pen and taking the ancient path of His greater story (Rom. 6:6-8, Eph. 6:11-13, Phil. 1:6). We admit our needs and look for help, remaining committed to the adventure. We accept, as fact, that we cannot do it alone. As we open ourselves up, provision for the adventure begins to be evident, and the battle we should fight becomes apparent, and our needs are met to face the coming battles as the mentors and Guide appear.

 On our adventures, we meet the mentors who walked the ancient path, battled through the wilderness, and found victory (Prov. 27:17, Heb. 12:1-2, 4:15). Their insight and experience offers hope, strength, encouragement, and wisdom, giving us perspective and clarity along the road. On our journey, Jesus is our ultimate mentor who walked the ancient path of humanity perfectly and showed us how to live. We follow His example and live as he does: in intimate fellowship with our Heavenly Dad.

We will need a guide to help us take each next step throughout our adventures (John 14:26). He shows us the way, helps formulate the battle plans, provides insights into what we cannot see, gives us tools along the journey, and helps us find space to heal. The Holy Spirit is our guide on our journey, always providing the next step and what is needed to take that step along the ancient path.

Everything the mentors and the guide offer gives us exactly what we need to face the true enemies of the wilderness, the enemy within (which we discussed in the previous blog), and the enemy without, the evil force that desires our destruction and death (Revelation 12:17). The enemy without is Satan, his demons, and the world. Whenever we decide to battle through, the enemy without reveals himself through the spiritual battle that rages around us and circumstances that come against the life our Heavenly Dad desires for us.

In the end, it will take all of who we are as sons and daughters, a community of warriors, and everything the mentors and guide offer us to fight against the enemy within and without attaining the final victory. After we achieve victory, we are ready to Return... 

Stories around the Fire

When I decided to battle through the wilderness, I realized I couldn't make this decision alone. Stepping away from school for the semester with no vision of returning surely went against what I was supposed to do. My enemies caused me to question my choices. The enemy within, my imposter self, said, Is this really what God is saying? Seems dumb. People don’t choose this path. What are other people going to think? You'll be seen as a failure, always stuck in a rut. Spiritual warfare raged in my head and heart as the enemy without spoke ill-words over me, instilling fear-driven thoughts of loss and self-destruction. I spent hours in prayer sifting through the chaos of voices in my head and heart to find my Father's voice. I took my question to the Father as my True Mentor Jesus did when He walked this earth, and I listened for the Guide to speak and reveal the next step: Should I really remove school from the plan? I invited my community of warriors to pray for clarity and listen on my behalf as I spent time seeking out the next step. They did, and in the end, I heard, Yes, remove school, and I will reveal the next step. Do this with me. My community stood with me in the decision. A week after starting at Cedarville University, hours before the financial deadline, I backed out for the semester. Again, it took all of who I am as God's son, my community of warriors, and everything the mentors and guide offered to fight against the enemies and attain victory to Return…
Calibration:
  • Take a look at the adventure you are on, where are you wandering right now and need to battle through? What would that look like?
  • What mentors are in your life? What can they offer you? What does your ultimate example Jesus offer you?
  • What is the guide saying to you? What is the next step in battling through? 
  • In what ways are you battling the enemy within and without?
  • Who are your community of warriors you’ve invited to battle with you?
  • What does the victory look like?
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