What’s in the Wilderness?

Patrick Stuart Baker

September 7, 2022

What's in the Wilderness

God calls us into the wilderness for a purpose. His purpose is to prepare us for the next phase of life. During nature, he removes things that depend on us. These things include our job, our stamina, and our strength. In other words, God removes those things that prevent us from trusting him.

Nature Wilderness

Despite the value of nature, humans have interfered with its survival for centuries. This interference has been both direct and indirect. For example, climate change is changing natural ecosystems and threatening native plant and animal species. In addition, pollution from nearby developments threatens to deteriorate wilderness areas. Moreover, development can hinder animal migration and disrupt certain plants’ pollination.

Human activity

Although there is no place on earth entirely untouched by human activity, several factors can affect wilderness areas. These factors include past human occupation, global processes, and activities on the edges of wilderness areas. Recent research shows that even the most minor human activity significantly impacts biodiversity.

The human activity that occurs in a wilderness area may harm ecosystems. However, these impacts are generally minimal. As a result, wilderness areas can provide an important baseline to study ecological systems and their responses to changing climate conditions.

Trusting God

To learn to trust God more, you must experience his presence in the wilderness. It’s easy to get caught up in your fears, but Jesus’ example will help you better understand God’s character. We learn to trust His ability and strength when we experience God’s presence in the wilderness.

Jesus chose the wilderness because God wanted to speak to Him. Nature was a place for Him to learn His voice and extensive plan. In the wilderness, He practiced the things that filled him with God’s presence and emptied that presence into the world.

Biblical examples

Throughout the Bible, God uses the wilderness as a place for personal renewal and covenant formation. The Israelites, for example, were forced to face the problems of hunger, fear, and isolation. Their time in the wilderness taught them to seek God, who is a mighty provider. It was a time for personal growth and defining their identities.

The wilderness is where God shows His people the consequences of their sins and the need for a savior. During this time, God remained faithful to His people, giving them daily bread and guiding them on their journey.

Criteria for wilderness designation

For an area to qualify for wilderness designation, it must be relatively undeveloped and free from human disturbance. It also must contain outstanding opportunities for unconfined recreation and solitude. In addition, the area must have a minimum size of five thousand acres. Lastly, it must be large enough to prevent the development and preserve its natural character.

The process of determining whether an area should be designated as wilderness or nonwilderness begins with a draft environmental statement that identifies ten alternative allocation methods. Each method would result in a different percentage of land designated as wilderness, nonwilderness, or for further planning. The public was invited to comment on the proposed decision criteria during the environmental statement review process. These criteria include resource planning goals developed by the Forest Service, public support, and costs and impacts  designation. Additionally, they consider other national issues, such as housing needs.