"Please show me your glory." The words straight from Moses after a pivotal event in the life of the children of Israel. While he was on the mountain of God for 40 days, receiving the commandments and laws that the LORD was laying out for His children, the children of Israel grew impatient and wanted a god they could see. Aaron put up no fight and went right to work.
Out of that came anger, grief, intercession, repentance. Then God commands that they should move, but He would not join them.
Moses pleads with God, "If you don't come with us, please don't make us go." God, I don't want to go where you are not! Don't make me leave you! The people were even grieved that their God, who they betrayed, would not go with them.
I love how Moses is always into reminding God what He had said... as if He had forgotten His own words. The thought that comes to mind is that God hides Himself to be found. He wants me to search Him. God had not forgotten what He had said... maybe it was to see if Moses would remember and hold God at His word.
God was moved by the requests of Moses and relented. He reassured Moses that he had favor in His sight and "changed His mind". But did God change His mind? Just in every grace story, maybe Plan B was Plan A all along. His desire was for Moses to seek Him and ask the hard thing.
Moses asks to see God's glory but God's response was not a yes or a no... He told Moses that He would let His goodness pass before him and proclaim before Moses His name "The LORD". God went on to describe a place where He would put Moses, on a rock and there would be a place for God to cover Moses and hide him from His own glory, because no man can see God and live.
As I was reading this portion, the words goodness and hide in the cleft of the rock stuck in my mind. How can I see God's goodness when I can't see Him? When I am stuck and hidden and covered from the most intense part, the part that could result in death.... seeing His own face. If I can't see God until He is moving away, how can I see His glory and goodness in my life?
During the most intense parts of my life, there is a closeness to God. I can't see Him, though His presence is the strongest I have experienced. During the times where I have faced death, literally, I have felt hidden and protected. And I may not see the goodness in those times, but as He begins to uncover me and I begin to see His back as He moves away, I see His goodness and I know Him as "The LORD" Jehovah God. Sovereign and in control of all. The God who doesn't need me... yet He wants me.
He covered me in the most intense times in His goodness. He covered me so that He could be close, so close. And I know He is there but as He uncovers my eyes, I see Him. I see His hand over every part of that situation or circumstance. This is His grace to me. His glorious goodness.