Devotional: Talking with God
Published 8:05 am Sunday, October 29, 2023
“Moses said to the LORD, “See, you have said to me, ‘Bring up this people’; but you have not let me know whom you will send with me. Yet you have said, ‘I know you by name, and you have also found favor in my sight.’” — Exodus 33:12 (NRS)
Moses comes to God sometime after the people of God had sinned at Mount Sinai, making and worshiping the golden calf. We do not know how long a wait it was before Moses comes to God to intercede for the people and to make sure that he and all the people are still in God’s good graces. God tells Moses that God’s “presence” would go with Moses and that God will give him rest. It seems that God’s “anger” has abated and that they are forgiven.
I read these words and wonder how many times have I truly talked with God? I do not mean lifting up prayers, which too often come as a last resort as all my efforts fail. I mean, how often have I actually had a conversation with God, opening my heart about my fears, my joys, my feelings and listening for what God says? It seems to me that most of us look to prayers not as an ongoing conversation, but rather talk at God when we want something.
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Moses wants God’s presence with him and the “people of God”. He is asking God not to fix everything, he is rather pleading with God to be present with all of the “people of God.” God has told him that they need to move on, to find the land that is, “flowing with milk and honey.” However, Moses is scared that leaving this place, where he has had conversations with God, will be leaving God behind. He tells God he will not go, unless God goes with them. I am sure this was not an easy conversation for Moses. Yet it gives us great insight on how God wants to be with us.
Do you long for God to be with you…always? Suppose you told God, you are not leaving Church this Sunday, until God promises that God will go with you. Do you really want God going everywhere with you?
Perhaps now might be a good time to start the conversation with God about being with God constantly.
Keith Leach is Pastor of College Church and College Chaplain at Hampden-Sydney College. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.