Abram journeyed on by stages to the Negeb.

If you don’t do much traveling, you may think that distant journeys sound exciting and adventurous. And they can be! But think about people who are constantly traveling, either for business or family commitments. More often than not, they end up bored and frustrated with the long trips. By the time of today’s first reading (Genesis 12:1-9), Abram had already traveled from Ur to Haran; that’s about 650 miles, or the distance from Paris to Berlin. It’s an astounding distance when you consider that he did it without a plane or car. But then God called him to take another 400-mile journey to the land of Canaan!

Between these places lay vast miles of desert and years of waiting to hear the Lord. In these desert years, you can imagine Abram feeling as dry and lifeless as the arid landscape around him. Was it really worth all the effort?

We all experience unexciting stretches of time in our lives—even the great saints of the Church did! Just like the liturgical year, our lives tend to be a mixture of special seasons and “everyday” time. There are times when faith and virtue don’t feel heroic or glorious or when we don’t hear God clearly. Whether they are due to sadness, doubt, or boredom, the dry spells often come upon us gradually, until we wake up one day and feel as if we are in a desert.

In times like these, it’s good to remember what Scripture tells us: that we walk with a faithful God who is able to make springs break out in desert places; he can even draw water from a rock!

So spend some time today reflecting on one way that God has blessed you personally—maybe through a friendship or a cherished verse in the Bible. Let that blessing reassure you. You may be surprised by how much life you can draw from a very small reminder of God’s goodness. Even when you’re in the desert, God is with you, offering you untold blessings. Don’t miss them!

“Lord, show me how to trust in your presence and your generosity whether I find myself in a dry season or a fruitful one.”

Psalm 33:12-13, 18-20, 22
Matthew 7:1-5
Genesis 12:1-9


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