Wilderness Therapy ∙

Wilderness Therapy

This was the regular pattern – at night, the cloud that covered the Tabernacle had the appearance of fire. Whenever the cloud lifted from over the sacred tent, the people of Israel would break camp and follow it. And wherever the cloud settled, the people of Israel would set up camp. In this way, they traveled and camped at the LORD’s command wherever he told them to go. – Numbers 9:16-18

Deuteronomy 8:2-18

 2 Remember how the LORD your God led you through the wilderness for these forty years, humbling you and testing you to prove your character, and to find out whether or not you would obey his commands.

 3 Yes, he humbled you by letting you go hungry and then feeding you with manna, a food previously unknown to you and your ancestors. He did it to teach you that people do not live by bread alone; rather, we live by every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD.

 4 For all these forty years your clothes didn’t wear out, and your feet didn’t blister or swell.

 5 Think about it: Just as a parent disciplines a child, the LORD your God disciplines you for your own good.

 7 For the LORD your God is bringing you into a good land of flowing streams and pools of water, with fountains and springs that gush out in the valleys and hills.

 14 Do not become proud at that time and forget the LORD your God, who rescued you from slavery in the land of Egypt.

 15 Do not forget that he led you through the great and terrifying wilderness with its poisonous snakes and scorpions, where it was so hot and dry. He gave you water from the rock!

 16 He fed you with manna in the wilderness, a food unknown to your ancestors. He did this to humble you and test you for your own good.

 17 He did all this so you would never say to yourself, “I have achieved this wealth with my own strength and energy.”

 18 Remember the LORD your God. He is the one who gives you power to be successful.

Trails Momentum of Henderson, N.C., is a therapeutic outdoor-adventure program for young adults based upon Wilderness Therapy.

Wilderness Therapy has the potential to be a transformative experience for young adults. Taking participants out of their comfort zones and challenging their boundaries encourages pursuing new goals and passions while testing and affirming their faith. Through Wilderness Therapy, young adults can experience personal growth and expand their horizons.

This journey of self-discovery provides young people with a unique opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of themselves, their capabilities, and their limitations.

Those who successfully navigate the challenges of Wilderness Therapy often gain a newfound sense of self-awareness and discover inner strengths they never knew existed. They develop self-esteem, confidence, and a sense of accomplishment by facing and overcoming challenges that they previously thought were insurmountable.

Wilderness Therapy is nothing new. The Father used it to guide and transform the generation of Israelites. Wilderness Therapy successfully transitioned the people from slavery to becoming resilient inhabitants of the Promised Land. A unique aspect of the Father’s Wilderness Therapy program is that He is always present, providing constant support to those who embark on this journey. They were never alone in the wilderness.

The Father’s presence among His people was not that of a mere observer but of a leader. The Lord led them using the cloud. He directed the Israelites to move or settle down and determined the duration of their stay in each location, whether for one night or two days, a month, or a year (Numbers 9:22). The Father guided them and directed them on every leg of their journey (Duguid and Hughes).


How blessed we would be if we would go when the Father told us to go and stay when the Father told us to stay! Obedience brings blessings (Stanley).

Father many children of the King are reticent to travel or move about. You use Wilderness Therapy to transform lives. Encourage me to be willing to follow You wherever Your love leads.


The Father’s sovereign and purposeful guidance and leadership of His people is seen in how He led them in the wilderness. The Israelites stayed in one place for as long as God intended, and each experience along the journey was purposeful and not coincidental (Wenham). The people had to be prepared to leave at a moment’s notice. They had to follow God’s visible guidance each day until the cloud came to a halt – this required unwavering obedience to His will  (ESV – Notes).

“There was no place for fussing and crying out, ‘Are we there yet?’ What they had to do was watch the cloud and follow carefully wherever it went. . . This journey is at the will of the Lord himself and under his direction every step of the way” (Duguid and Hughes).

It required forty years and the death of an entire generation for the Israelites to learn to trust God more than their eyes or emotions.

What does it take for us to learn to trust God in the same way?

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© Dr. H 2023

2 thoughts on “Wilderness Therapy ∙

  1. “What does it take for us to learn to trust God in the same way?” Oh my oh my… Thank you so much Dr. H for ending today’s post with this most poignant question!


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