When Israel rebelled against God on the verge of Canaan, the land of promise, God sent them on a 40 year journey in the wilderness. You can read about that journey in Numbers 13 and 14.
It was a journey of punishment for sin. It was a journey of purification from rebellion. It was a journey of repentance and returning to the Lord. For 40 years the people had opportunity to reflect on their wrongs. I have to believe that does something to a person. I have to believe that shapes a community.
What does it look like for us to go on our own journey of repentance and return to the Lord? What purification do we need? What work must God do in us to restore us to true life?