Not too long ago I read a book that referred to Moses talking with God about the difficulties of leading the Israelites. (Given their tendency to whine and complain about, oh, everything, he had good reason to be concerned!) The author pointed out that Moses didn’t ask God to make them more obedient or to miraculously improve his leadership skills. Instead, he asked to know God better. And then Moses said, “Now show me Your glory” (Exodus 33:18) That’s a pretty bold request, isn’t it?!
I don’t know about you, but when I am concerned and worried, my prayers are usually along the lines of ‘Please help me to do such-and-such’ and more often than I’d like to admit, ‘Please help so-and-so see the error of their ways’. My first response is not, Please Father, I need to see Your glory.
But, you know what? I do. I do need God to show me His glory. His glory which spun the universe into being. His glory in majestic mountains, the Aurora Borealis, changing leaves, intricate snowflakes. His glory in friendship and laughter and meaningful work. His glory in the perfect life, death and resurrection of Jesus. His glory which has no beginning and no end.
When Moses came down from Mount Sinai his face was radiant because he had spent time in the presence of God. Being with God did not make the Israelites any easier to lead. It didn’t suddenly make them grateful or stop their whining. But, Moses was different, literally aglow with God’s glory.
What about me? Do I ever boldly ask to see God’s glory? Or, am I too busy telling God all the things I need Him to be doing for me? Show me Your glory. When I get strained and stressed, that’s what I want my cry to be. And when God answers me, by the Holy Spirit’s power may I see it, bask in it, take time to be still and know God better through it.
And then, oh, then, may my face be radiant. Not of my own worthiness, but only because of God’s glory. The glory that is returning someday with Jesus. When God will come and make His dwelling with us. With our perfected, unveiled faces we will behold His glory! (Do you think we’ll glow?!) The new Jerusalem will need no lamp nor sun because God’s glory alone will be our light. Oh, Holy Father, show me Your glory!