I want a lot of things this morning.
I want anxiety to be gone. I want to write like 15 blog posts (so I can catch up). I want my day to go okay. I want good time with friends. I want sleep. I want a hot chocolate.
I want to meet with God.
I’m into Exodus 33 right now.
God breaks the news to the Israelites that He wants them to go up to the land of which He promised Abraham and Isaac and Jacob; the Promised Land.
“I will send out an angel before you, and I will drive out the Canaanites, the Amorites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites. Go up to a land flowing with milk and honey.”
Everything they’ve ever wanted, everything that has brought them this far and kept them going – the fulfillment of the promise of God – is held out to them.
But there is this one catch:
“But I will not go up among you, lest I consume you on the way.”
And “when the people heard this disastrous word, they mourned”
The question whispering in my ear this morning is: is this word disastrous to me?
If God breaks the news to me today that He will give me all the good things I might want, if He holds out to me – not sinful temptations, but promises fulfilled – if He does all this, but reveals He will not go with me, how would I respond? Would I morn? Would I weep? Would I call that disastrous?
The text begs the question – what is it that we really seek? God or His gifts?
If today God offers to make your ministry thrive, your family multiply, your children flourish, your work succeed, but His presence is not with you – would you consider that disastrous?
If today God offers to make you feel peaceful and rested and loved and known, but without His presence – would you consider that disastrous?
When you imagine a ‘great’ day, what makes it great? The presence of God or the stuff that happened? When you envision a ‘disastrous’ day, what makes it seem that way? Stuff that happened or a sense of disconnectedness with God?
I don’t know if it’s something in the water (or the book of Exodus) but today – for me – the thought of moving another minute without Him is devastating.
Today, I know that the question itself is faulty.
Good things or God?
It makes no sense.
There are no good things apart from God.
Peace & rest or God?
There is no peace or rest apart from Him.
There is no Heaven if not Him.
There is no gift that has value if it is not from Him and for Him and through Him.
There is no promise He could hold out that would mean anything to me that doesn’t terminate on getting Him.
Maybe I’m just tired.
Or maybe I’m just awake.
But either way: today I want Him.