There are scads of tragic stories in the Bible that illicit an uncomfortable familiarity when I read them. Does that happen to you too? Air-drop pretty much anywhere in The Book and you’ll see evidence of a narrative that repeats over and over again; a narrative that humankind has continued to repeat right up to the present. I have done my part as a “faithful” contributor…
Inevitably then, as I sit in the Word with God, I do a lot of apologizing on behalf of my own sorry self, and my fellow humans that have gone before. The upside of that is the opportunity that is always there to be blown away by the character of God. So God-worship ends up being the final, happy product.
In my terribly/wonderfully slow plod through the book of Exodus, I have been literally thrilled time and again as God has opened my eyes to who He is, who humanity is, and who I am. But when I crept up near the end of the time God was giving Moses the six-hundred plus laws, I felt a little sick in my gut. The golden calf was coming and I wasn’t ready to face it. So when God finished speaking to Moses (and me) on top of Mount Sinai, I had to close the Book for a little while. Ridiculous.
Two weeks later I ventured back in and reluctantly opened Exodus thirty-two. Ugh! I didn’t want to look into the heart of the Chosen Ones. I’d seen enough about “us” to know I was going to grieve all over again. But I would also have the blessed and VERY good fortune to remember the goodness of my long-suffering God and “ascribe to the Lord the glory due His name.”
Aren’t you glad that after the pain of facing our colossal failures, God turns our faces toward Himself?! And there we see the essence of love even as we see His glory. There is life beyond my personal Golden Calf experiences. There is for you too. He has seen it all innumerable times and His heart remains tender toward any who would come to Him for forgiveness.