This post was most recently updated on January 12th, 2022
Wanderlust is one thing, but to wander is another…”to ramble without a definite purpose or objective, to roam, rove, or stray.”
As one who loves to travel and explore, I can completely understand experiencing “wanderlust.” I absolutely love seeing new places, meeting new people, and learning about the places I visit. I’m always curious and looking for more unique experiences. My purpose for traveling is to learn and grow, strengthen bonds with family and friends, and have a greater appreciation of other people and cultures. I also enjoy seeing many varied and beautiful landscapes.
Wandering isn’t what I do. I know who I am and where I’m going…and where I’m returning when the trip is over. But I hadn’t really thought too much about it until I heard a lesson in Sunday School about the ancient Israelites wandering in the wilderness as a “type” of our lives.
Certainly there are many aspects of our lives that could be compared to “wandering in the wilderness”. Opposition, adversity, great sorrow and pain, physical illness–these can all lead us to stray or feel lost. If the path back to our Heavenly Father is a straight and narrow one, it is easy to imagine wandering when we cannot find our way through the wilderness of difficulties.
I wanted to share this letter with you…
“Dear Child of Mine,
On this earth, during your mortal life, it may seem you are traveling in a wilderness — where you are often lost and wandering…where the path can be rocky and difficult…and where you may even feel alone.
May I assure you that I will be with you always. I will guide you at the crossroads. I’ll comfort you at the end of an exhausting day. And I will strengthen you when the path becomes steep.
I will bless you that you will learn and grow through your travels in this life. And at the end of your mortal journey, I will welcome you home with open arms.”
–your Heavenly Father
I hope that you will be a traveler (even with some wanderlust!), but not a wanderer. Hold on firmly to your faith and to the knowledge that God will get you through this life–and through the wilderness. Stay grounded. Reach out and help others who are struggling. Find joy in the blessings while not succumbing to the trials. According to Peter Pan, “to live would be an awfully big adventure!”
I’d love to hear how life has been an adventure for you! Please share what gets you through the steep and rocky roads in the comments below. And if you’d like to know more about what I believe about my purpose in life, click here.