There’s a lot to chew on in this chapter, isn’t there? The Israelites finding themselves in the Desert of Sinai reminded me of the day I got off the plane to make my new home in San Diego. It seemed as if I’d come to another world. It was surely like that for the Israelites.
This whole idea of being a “kingdom of priests and a holy nation” led by a God who manifested his presence in “thunder and lightning, with a thick cloud over the mountain” would have scared the daylights out of me. I imagine I would have been right with the people when they said to Moses, “Speak to us yourself and we will listen. But do not have God speak to us or we will die.” And yet, the longer I live, the more I want to hear the Lord speak, and when I do, it’s not scary at all! I also take great comfort in knowing that he knows my name. Such is the nature of God’s love when he makes his dwelling place within us. Know what I mean??
My husband, clever fellow that he is, has now re-defined “GPS” (Global Positioning System) to stand for Guidelines, Place to dwell, and Sins Atoned for – the three requirements God initiated in order to ‘pitch his tent’ among us. And we would do well to incorporate that guidance system into our daily lives, wouldn’t we? We’d never find ourselves lost again!
I don’t know about you, but I long for the kind of special relationship that Moses had with the Lord. God’s presence is vital in my life, and I don’t want to do anything that would jeopardize it. The Israelites had the cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night to guide them in their travels. We have his Word. Much as I love a good show of power, I think I got the better deal. I get spooked easily!