Lord, show me your glory

Then the Lord came down in the cloud and stood there with him and proclaimed his name, the Lord. God had promised to show Moses the “glory” of the Lord (33:18, 22). Now that the time had come, the “glory” is barely noticeable in the brief mention of the cloud. The Lord’s greater glory was found not in this visible manifestation, but rather in the relationships proclaimed in his name. — J.K. Bruchner, Exodus (Understanding the Bible Commentary)

Moses made a request of an experience with God. God went further to what Moses needed. What would NOT sustain Moses and Israel was an experience. That would fade. What WOULD sustain Moses and Israel was the character of God. God gives Moses and Israel more of his name. In unveiling more of his name, which is what is happening in Ex. 34:5-7, he is giving Moses what is needed. Moses needed to know the WAYS of God, not just an experience of God. God gave Moses an experience to verify what was revealed, but Moses could rely on the name of God (the character of God) far longer.

When I cry out, “Show me your glory, Lord!” I think I want an experience. What I need is the revealing of God in his character t know I can keep on walking, to know I can face any giant in the land, to know I have what is needed for the tasks ahead. He IS gracious and compassionate.

Experiences help solidify what he reveals of himself to us, but we need the TRUTH of his character more than a one time experience that fades with time and memory.

Favorite passages

If there is any passage I could wear out in any physical Bible, it would be (and is, by the way I look in different translations and see I’ve already been there and marked it up incessantly) Ex. 33:13-23.

Almost every day I have a prayer: Seek the favor of God.

Moses leads the way for me. He constantly longs for the favor of God. He asks for his very presence. He asks what no one else has asked for as a leader. God grants as fully as possible what Moses can take. Why? Because Moses won’t give up. 

His life is intercession.

Yet, while I pray that request with some frequency, I find that while I mark up that passage with regularity, and visit it often… I am not in the same category with Moses. I like the thought of the glory of God… but not enough to sit there and wait for God to move!

I am impatient. I am lazy. I am distracted.

Moses cries out, “Teach me your ways!” and then has the wisdom to actually sit and wait for the instruction. I too often cry out the same request, then slam my Bible shut and race off to the next thing.

Lord, forgive my presumption. Forgive my false starts. Forgive my lazy questions and request. Grant me the heart of Moses. Grant me the tenacity of a man who had learned through time that God isn’t in any hurry, so why should he be rushed? Lord, when I ask, “Teach me your ways,” may I then sit and wait for some instruction!

Question of the day — A sustained “move of God”

My study in the life of Moses (looking at his prayer life) takes me to Numbers 10. It is Israel just before they are “ready” to move toward the Promised Land. They are truly people of the presence. When the cloud moves, they follow. When the cloud stops, they camp. The feasts are in place. Israel is paying attention.

Of course, we then get Numbers 11. It unravels in a hurry.

As I think on how long it takes for Israel to “get it back” (and I think that comes under the early years of Solomon and doesn’t last very long), it may be from Numbers 10 to Acts 2 there just isn’t a time when there is a sustained following. Not like Numbers 10.

I know individuals who are truly “people of the presence” and I suppose we could look at revival moments like Azusa Street as “sustained movements,” but I am pondering SUSTAINED movements. Not individuals. Not revival moments. A generation. A movement. Over time.

Can we see a sustained movement where the people of God are truly “people of the Presence?”

The necessity of waiting on God

Moses was called up to the mountain. There he was in the powerful presence of God 40 days and nights.

Moses spent the forty days in the presence of God and received the blueprint for God’s heart concerning Israel.

Israel “waited” at the bottom of the mountain and fell back to their old patterns from Egypt.

Moses received the heart of God. Israel built a golden calf.

When God “delays,” how do we RESPOND?