Monday, September 14, 2009

Monday's Meditation: How God reveals his glory

When everything seems to be going wrong, God reveals his goodness and his glory.
This morning, consider Exodus 33. Moses has experienced unimaginable victory: the Egyptians have been defeated, God’s people have been delivered from slavery into freedom, and Moses has received ten life-giving words that will order Israel’s new identity as God’s own people. Moses is literally at the heights of revelation and victory. When he comes down from the mountaintop he gets the surprise of his life: the people of God, freshly rescued from 400 years of misery, have turned away from God and bowed down before a statue of a calf. Worse still, the “worship” of the man-made statue involved the kind of party that would make your mother blush.
When you turn to Exodus 33, that’s the story so far. Some days are diamonds, some days are stones, and some days are calf manure. In that place of betrayal and spiritual adultery, God decides to demonstrate his goodness to Moses. Exodus 33: 12 – 23 takes only a moment to read, but we could meditate on them for the rest of the week.
Moses pleads with God for help, and God answers simply, “My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.” God’s first answer is to offer his presence. It’s what we need most. Selah: pause, and think about that!
Moses responds with wisdom that still applies for us today: regarding God’s presence Moses says, “What else will distinguish me and your people from all the other people on the face of the earth?” The distinguishing mark of God’s people is his presence. In times of victory or trouble, his presence is our identity. I know it’s Monday, but Selah: pause, and think about that!
God assurances are personal and filled with approval. Moses is bold enough to push all the chips into the middle of the table: “show me your glory.” What a strange request when there are so many problems to solve! Today, make time and Selah: pause, and think about that!
Finally, even as God himself says, “yes,” to Moses, God offers a gentle instruction. Moses asked, “show me your glory,” and God says, “I will cause my goodness to pass in front of you.” The lesson is: one of the ways God demonstrates his glory is to show us his goodness. Why not ask him today to open your eyes to his goodness? Selah!

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