This is one of my favourite Lenten pictures; Temptation in the Desert by James Jacques Joseph Tissot 1836-1902.
Here in the wilderness Jesus has found shelter, a place of rest. Here in this depiction of the wilderness the tempter becomes the doorway into the wilderness itself not as he tried to portray the doorway out of it. Here in this cave is the echo of another cave, a cave that is it not yet time to leave.
Yes we are called into the wilderness, but we are called into the safety of it under God’s shelter, we are called to it so that we can focus heart and mind. Leaving that shelter finds us in the true wilderness, taking the seemingly easy route doesn’t necessarily lead us back to those still waters rather it can make the mirage of them become all too apparent.
Lord help me this Lent to stay in the safety of your protection so that when you leave the cave of death at Easter I may follow you out into a glorious garden of hope.
The picture is reproduced here under Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial ShareAlike 3.0 License and can be found on Wikimedia.