Trip to Moroccan Desert Feb 2009

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In February 2009 I went on a week long trip to Morocco with four .  The last few days of the trip involved a 300 odd mile drive to the only part of Morocco with proper sand-dunes called Merzouga (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erg_Chebbi).  There were eight men in the group; myself, Mark, John and Martin from the UK and four guys who live in Morocco.  We went to the desert to pray and encounter God in a different way and our intention was to camp out there from Friday morning until Sunday morning.  I felt for some time before we left that part of the reason for the trip was about intimacy with Jesus but also I wanted to call for the Wild Fire.  To that end a couple of days before we left I dyed my hair red as an outward sign of an inner longing for the fire of God. 
 
We arrived in Merzouga in the evening of Thursday 5th and as it was dark stayed in a local Berber Hotel (Auberge Sahara). 

On the Friday morning (6th) we set off into the desert with our packs.

This time of year the weather is normally bright, dry, quite hot in the day and very cold at night.  However the weather was grey and cloudy and the wind was very strong.  As we struggled up the edge of the largest dune the wind turned from strong to pretty ferocious.

The gusts nearly took you off your feet and exposed skin felt like it was being sand-blasted.  The climb was long and hard but once at the top we took shelter in the lee of the dune.  We were quite surprised to get a few light showers but they didn’t last long so we then spent some time reading our Bibles and then prophesying over, and praying for, each other.  In the late afternoon the weather then really changed, the wind switched direction 180 degrees and a huge storm front came at us from over the dunes a few miles to the north. 

Black clouds swept in and then the thunder, lightning and rain began.  As the light faded the rain also started to include quite significant amounts of hail!  We were standing at the top of a huge sand-dune in the Sahara desert in a rain and hail storm with lightening flashing above our heads and thunder rolling all around. 

We decided to head back to the Auberge as staying all night in such weather could be quite dangerous.  By about 10pm the storm had blown itself out and I lay looking up at the wonder of the stars from the hotel grounds and pondering the crazy day we’d just had.
 
The next morning (Saturday 7th) we awoke to blue skies and warm sun.  There was hardly a breath of wind and after breakfast we headed back out to a different part of the dunes. 

The whole day stayed virtually cloudless, calm, peaceful warm and dry and I had an awesome day just chilling with God, worshipping and reading the Bible.  We watched the most glorious sunset.

Early on the Sunday (8th) to see daybreak and watch the even more glorious sunrise.
 
When climbing the dune in the wind on the Friday my initial response to the weather was frustration, then anger that it was going to ‘ruin’ the experience – as I was remembering how peaceful it had been when we’d been there the year before.  But God reminded me about my red hair and how the ‘wild’ can sometimes really upset our plans, make us uncomfortable and be a bit dangerous, however it’s also exciting, exhilarating and afforded us an almost unique experience – rain and hail in the dry desert!  I think it was also a lesson in not trying to hold on to yesterday’s manna (the experience of the previous trip) but to keep pressing in to embrace the new things God is doing. 
 
So that’s what I’ve been up to!  Now looking forward to the rest of 2009 and discovering what other seeds God has sown in my life through chasing his presence in the desert! 

© 2012 Gideon-IT