I'm sure some of you read the above title and thought of desserts. It is ok. Feel no shame. Actually, my latest fun homemade dessert is sugarless ice-cream. Yum! I had had my fill of making cakes and cookies during lockdown and so I've moved onto something cooler, literally. A sweet sorbet sugarless something...Long story short, it's good.
Back to deserts. I've been reflecting on a blog post by Arthur (Superhero 1) where he extrapolates and rinses out juicy truth from the Lion King movie. If you haven't read Arthurs blog post, go read it. As we chatted about the ideas that Arthur presented, my brother and I came to consider this analogy of desert-seasons that the movie depicts. We noticed therein two kinds of deserts.
The first desert that Simba our protagonist goes through is one of wondering, disillusionment and total loss of self and home. He becomes dehydrated and see's no hope in sight. No purpose for living. He also feels such immense guilt. This first desert may look familiar to certain situations in life where you feel as though you can't go on and estranged from your family and home. And like Arthur speaks about, this sort of situation may cause you to take on friends and live in places that look seemingly great but were never your calling in the first place. You begin to allow other people to tell you who you are and what you should be doing with your life rather than facing your fears.
The second desert is different. Yes, it is still a desert but the difference is you. After Nala and Rafiki, our trusty support characters, successfully remind Simba of who he is and what he is meant to be, we are given this amazing shot of Simba running through the desert back to where he came from in order to take hold of his destiny. Now, I've always loved this scene because of the music that plays and the slow motion graphics of Simbas paws in the desert sand but now when I view it in contrast to his previous desert experience I learn something. Desert experiences in life have everything to do with purpose and perspective. Lemme elucidate.
Deserts happen. A person who is tirelessly working on a project, alone, day and night, not sure whether or not it will turn out right is in a kind of desert as one who is down, feeling low and confused about life. The former is in a desert but they are focused to get through it to their goal. They know the loneliness is temporary but they are also prepared to face what lies ahead; good or bad. The latter sees their situation as finally and stagnant. They would rather someone just told them what to or they would just waste away in the wasteland. The first is full of purpose and perspective, willing to endure temporary solitariness because they know it doesn't define them or where they. The latter is full of disillusionment and improvidence.
These are the two kind of deserts. I guess it is important that while going through a desert season, you focus on "going through" and not stalling or gaining desert friends like Timon and Pumba who end up sending you completely off course. Constantly watching who you relate with when you're at your lowest and most vulnerable.
Isaiah 50:7 " For the Lord helps Me; therefore have I not been ashamed and confounded. Therefore have I set my face like a flint, and I know that I shall not be put to shame."
When going through a desert, set your mind, your face like a flint. Hard. Unshakeable. Solid because the Lord is your help and you will not be put to shame.