The desert can be a forbidding place. Bedouins survive there, scorpions and snakes, thorns and thistles thrive. Water is scarce, the sun intense and the wind irritating. Temperatures often plunge below zero at night and predators lurk in the darkness.
Of course, there are many different types of deserts and some are harsher than others but, any way you look at it, a desert experience will be one of scarcity, loneliness and difficulty.
For many people, that also would describe life – or at least their life. Scarcity, loneliness and difficulty characterize the lives of the majority of people on planet earth, even in this modern age.
Even the experience of plenty (instead of scarcity) in the context of friends and family (instead of loneliness) and in the comfort and convenience of our own homes (instead of difficulty) can be invaded by disease, accidents and painful suffering. One of the great mysteries of life is the existence of evil and the seemingly blind, amoral forces of life that affect the just and the unjust alike.
And these are not mere words. Lives are lost, suffering is inflicted on children and the innocent, relationships are broken. Life hurts. We live in the matrix of a paradox. Both paradise and paradise lost. Both desert and promised land. Both good and evil. What goes on here?
Tears of the Desert Warrior attempts to give some perspective on this painful paradox and what, if anything, we can do about it. Above all, the idea is to stay real – not to minimize the horrible nature of what goes on in this life but also not to take lightly the answers that God has for us, difficult though they may be to accept.
Not difficult because they are hard to understand but rather because His answers will force us to take a good, hard look at ourselves and our role in the tragedy that is this world.
Yes, we need to talk to this divine being we call God, the Creator. We need to know who he is and what his role is in all of this, and ask him some hard questions.
No doubt. But be prepared.
He has some hard questions of his own.
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A Conversation with God by Bert A. Amsing
Excerpt from Tears of the Desert Warrior by Bert A. Amsing
Copyright © 2012 by vanKregten Publishers. All rights reserved.
Footnotes and references included in the original manuscript.