Not just the Australian aborigines, but indigenous people of many cultures have rituals like the walkabout. In contemporary US we call them “road trips.” Just as the desert calls the indigenous people of Australian and the US Southwest, the desert beckons me. I love the open skies, sun, mountains, and spaciousness of the Southwest.
My brother has lived in Henderson, Nevada, for years and I had never gotten away to visit him. It gave me the perfect destination to go walkabout. His daughter was moving to Chandler, AZ the second weekend after I “semi-retired” from full time work. The chance to help her move made the trip even better!
My walkabout in the desert Southwest was just what I needed to recharge my soul and prepare for this next stage of life.
How can being out in the desert heat recharge a soul? Interestingly, that is exactly where the Holy Spirit led Jesus to prepare for His public ministry. Jesus spent 40 days in desert facing the heat of the trials of fasting and the Devil. How can the desert fill our soul? The starkness, the heat, the barrenness can open our souls to being filled with God instead of the busyness and physical comforts we usually fill our souls with.
I thank God for the opportunity to “go walkabout” and be with Him in the desert. There are always reasons for not being able to get away. However, if I would have found ways to “go walkabout” earlier, I wouldn’t have needed such a dramatic one now.
The goal of a walkabout is to free up our soul to be filled with God’s presence. I know there are reasons it is hard to get away, but you probably don’t need a 4200-mile road trip to the desert. Your soul might benefit from even a little walkabout from work, busyness, people, or technology. Is your soul calling you to “go walkabout”?