Tuesday, February 7, 2017

The Back of Jesus

Then Moses said, ‘Now show me your glory’…Then the LORD said, ‘There is a place near me where you may stand on a rock. When my glory passes by, I will put you in a cleft in the rock and cover you with my hand until I have passed by. Then I will remove my hand and you will see my back’” Exodus 33:18-23.

I love this passage having read it many times before. But this morning I have been blessed with new mercies…new revelation…fresh manna for the day.  I didn’t connect the fact that this beautiful exchange between God was a plea from Moses. God had just put him on notice that He was going to withdraw His presence from the Israelites due to their rebellion and stubbornness. When Moses said those 5 words, he was really saying, ‘Show up now! Please make yourself available to help me! I cannot do it alone!’ God answered in a beautiful description of what was getting ready to occur. God didn’t tell Moses how He was going to work. He promised Moses that He would hide him until God had pass. He promised to cover Moses in an effort to protect him from the event. Then after the fact Moses would be given spiritual sight to celebrate the fact that God had come…had intervened…had impacted the outcome. And, all the while, Moses was near to God.

We have all been in that cleft waiting on the Lord to act. Some of us might be tucked in that rock right now begging for God to show up, and pleading for the resolution of our circumstances. We are on our knees desperate to see God, but our eyes seem covered because we fail to see anything good happening. We have the same promise that Moses had if we are believers. Once God moves beyond and in front of our circumstances there will be a glorious day where we finally see His back…we see how the hand of God was orchestrating everything while we waited. The fruit is spiritual growth…seeing the faithfulness of God…taking our eyes off what is in front of us and watching for God’s back. He never leaves us unprotected and alone for He is near us during the tough times and knows perfectly what we are experiencing. When we are distressed by what we lack Satan is having some success that day. But, when we are focusing on what we have we can better see God up ahead. Gratitude makes God more visible in our despair.

Any growth during a trial is conditioned on our cooperating with what God is doing. And, often, the good that God is bringing to our lives can be seen only through the perspective of time. The purpose of this trial is for our transformation…Keep going! Good is coming! It will all be worth it! Don’t give up! Look to Jesus!’ When Life Is Hard, p 140.

And one fine day the clouds will part, we will look up ahead and see the back of Jesus!

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