In Exodus 24, the seventy elders, Aaron, and his sons are invited to come and worship God, but only Moses is invited to come near. That’s a startling thought if you take the time to consider it. Everyone else was to worship God from a distance but Moses worshipped God `close up and personally`. He encountered God face to face! (Exodus 33:11). Moses had a relationship with God that was unique from all those who lived around him. He had met God out in the wilderness, submitted to God`s will for his life, and had allowed God to work His signs and wonders through him. When God spoke, Moses not only listened but also heeded what was said. He walked very closely with God and knew a degree of intimacy with Him that others didn`t. Joshua, Moses assistant and eventual successor, must have marvelled at this fact and longed for such a relationship with God himself. In Exodus 33 we read that after Moses would meet with God in the Tabernacle, he would return to the camp, but Joshua would linger behind.
I wonder what your relationship with God is like. Do you worship Him from afar or do you know him `face to face` as Moses did? God wants each of His children to know Him intimately, yet often we settle for far less than this. We are almost content to worship Him from a distance because to worship Him `close up and personally` is a frightening thought. We feel unworthy of such a privilege, and fear the exposure that such nearness would bring. The closer I walk with God, the brighter His light shines in my life and exposes the darkness within me. I don`t like that because it causes me to feel ashamed, even though that is not God`s intention. He actually wants to dispel that darkness and bring more of His life, but like Adam and Eve in the garden, I`m tempted to hide from my Maker.
As humans, we often fear intimacy because we fear rejection. One definition of intimacy is `You see into me` and that reality is very risky. If I allow you to see me as I really am, with all my weaknesses and shortcomings, you may walk away in disgust! I don`t dare to risk that because it would hurt me too much. We then transfer that same fear on to God. It`s a really silly fear actually, because God is never shocked by the darkness that He finds in us. In fact, He knew it was there long before we did, yet He still beckoned us to come near. `Let me deal with the darkness`, He gently whispers. `I want to speak to you `face to face` and `heart to heart.`
How will you respond to God’s invitation today?
Prayer: Father God, despite my fear, I want to draw near to You. I invite You to bring the light of Your presence and dispel any darkness in my life. Thank You that You will not reject me when I come with a contrite and broken heart. Amen.
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