Tuesday, July 15, 2008

30 Day of Praise - Day 9

"To behold is to become." That's a line in the book I've been reading.

It was interesting as I went to do my reading and Bible study that it was talking about what I was considering in last night's post, how I could feel myself being somewhat different since I have been focusing on the Lord. I almost typed "because of the focus" instead, but then suddenly it sounded a lot like I was giving myself some of the credit for the change, and that is definitely NOT the case.

The book also went on to quote another Christian writer's assessment that the presence of God is very simply a place of transformation. You cannot be in the presence of God and not be changed.

When Moses spent time in God's presence on Mt. Sinai, he came down physically changed, so much so that it brought fear into the Israelites when they saw him.

Now it was so, when Moses came down from Mount Sinai (and the two tablets of the Testimony were in Moses’ hand when he came down from the mountain), that Moses did not know that the skin of his face shone while he talked with Him. So when Aaron and all the children of Israel saw Moses, behold, the skin of his face shone, and they were afraid to come near him. Then Moses called to them, and Aaron and all the rulers of the congregation returned to him; and Moses talked with them. Afterward all the children of Israel came near, and he gave them as commandments all that the Lord had spoken with him on Mount Sinai. And when Moses had finished speaking with them, he put a veil on his face. But whenever Moses went in before the Lord to speak with Him, he would take the veil off until he came out; and he would come out and speak to the children of Israel whatever he had been commanded. And whenever the children of Israel saw the face of Moses, that the skin of Moses’ face shone, then Moses would put the veil on his face again, until he went in to speak with Him.

I remember a few years ago I was in a Wednesday night worship service and I looked over at a woman who I knew casually. I could see something on her, something different, and I knew she had been spending time in the presence of the Lord. When I asked her, she had confirmed that she had actually made and been keeping a commitment to spend more time in the Lord's presence. It encouraged her that I could physically see it. It was exciting to see.

I don't know if I'm shining. (yet?) But I do know that I can sense a transforming work going on. It may not be dramatic, but it is real, because it is God's work, not my own.

The only thing I can say that I know has changed for me is this, I cannot as easily avoid spending time in God's presence. Have you ever been thirsty, but not really realized how thirsty until you took a drink? It's like you go for a sip of water and suddenly you find yourself gulping down the whole bottle. That is what I find this worship endeavor to be like. I'm no longer satisfied with a sip; I want to gulp in all that God is.

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