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The Upper Room Devotion for Friday, January 12, 2024, was written by Enid Adah Nyinomujuni of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.



33 He turns rivers into a desert, springs of water into thirsty ground, 34 a fruitful land into a salty waste, because of the wickedness of its inhabitants. 35 He turns a desert into pools of water, a parched land into springs of water. 36 And there he lets the hungry live, and they establish a town to live in; 37 they sow fields, and plant vineyards, and get a fruitful yield.

Psalm 107:33-37 NRSV


Author's Thoughts

One day, I looked across a valley and saw a garden of maize. I wondered why the garden had been planted in such a hot, sandy, and dry place. I was surprised there could be such green growth in an almost desert area. Then I learned that the farmer had dug wells to water his garden so that he was able to plant the maize and get a plentiful harvest.

When I seem to be stuck in barren situations, God is able to make waters spring up and bring me renewed life. Oftentimes, when we feel like we are dwelling in a desert, our needs overwhelm us. When our work seems not to be yielding anything good, we feel lifeless, barren, and unfruitful. But God is able and willing to cause waters to flow in the midst of our deserts to give life, fruitfulness, and productivity - even where there seems to be no hope. So let us be encouraged by our powerful and loving God!


Pastor Anthony's Thoughts


When was the last time you felt like you were in a barren place in your life? Some of our barren places can be a job without room for advancement, a class where you are not challenged, or a relationship that has ceased to grow. Whatever our barren place, we often feel like our lives are withering away with nothing to show for our efforts. Yet, Enid's reflection reminds us, that God can provide nourishment for us in our barren places. Sustenance that fortifies our spirits until God provides us a way out of our barren places. I encourage you to turn your mind toward the ways God is attempting to nourish you in your barren place.


Author's Prayer

O Lord, may you create fruitful fields from the barren situations in our lives. In the name of Jesus. Amen.


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