In Exodus 33 Moses asks to see God’s glory and God tells Moses that no one can see Him and live but that He will cover him with His hand, pass by him and then he will see His back parts.
Exodus 33:21-23 21 Then the LORD said, “There is a place near me where you may stand on a rock. 22 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. 23 Then I will remove my hand and you will see my back; but my face must not be seen.”
The twelve year old inside is snickering. But onward…on the way home from Maryland, Scott listened to Rob Bell’s Velvet Elvis. I read it I think a year or two ago now but I went ahead and listened for a few minutes. One thing I can not get off my mind that I don’t even remember reading the first time is his commentary on this verse. He was saying that some believe his “back parts” mean simply his back and yet others believe that he was saying the best we’ll ever see of Him is “where I just was”.
I can’t help but think that at some level that’s true. One thing that most believers agree is that we’ve never seen God (the Father). We don’t know what He looks like. Some argue whether He even has a body. We’ve never seen Him in action. In fact, in the moments that I’ve felt and known God to be God the very most, it’s where He just was. In my healing, He had already healed. In a perfectly timed letter, He had already worked the timing together. In my peace, He had already given it to me. In a word from Scripture, He had already led me to it and given me understanding. In a word through His Spirit, He had already spoken. In Christ’s birth, He had already fulfilled hundreds of prophecies. The very best we get right now is where He just was.
It makes me wonder that if where He was puts me in such a state of awe, what it will be like to see Him working all of it together before He works it together. How marvelous will it be to see how much He cares for us, how He works everything together for our good even before we realize it.
I’m thankful for Christ’s birth but mostly this year for pointing me to the Heavenly Father that loves me, is cheering for me, is in awe of me and is working everything together for my good. If Christ’s life is the perfect example for us, I am more convinced than ever that He has a plan for us. I may not be able to see His face but I know it’s there. We’re not here by accident. He’s thinking about us. He’s moving and shifting things for us. And when I see where He just was once more, I’ll be reminded I was covered by His hand.