A Heart Seeking Favor

9:18 AMHeather

On day 4 of this year of GRACE, and I must say--the depths of it already!  Feeling like a fool for questioning the simplicity of the word "grace" for 2012.  As the Word says, the foolishness of man points to the wisdom of God.  

SO, day before last, we were talking about how the first form of the word grace found in the Bible was favor.  At least according to my Wycliffe Bible dictionary--I make no claim to be a Biblical scholar.  Wycliffe pointed me to Jeremiah 31:2 where we saw how God gives us favor, even in our deserts.  The next passage that Wycliffe pointed me to was Exodus 33.

When I turned there, I saw my notes in the margin from some previous reading, and I knew this was gonna be good.  I love, love Exodus 33!  I love how Moses talks with the Lord so intimately--pouring himself out.  I think it's a picture for me of what prayer should look like.  Honest.  Bold.  Confident.  Intimate.  Talk about storming the Throne room!  Today, let's dive in to Exodus 33: 12-14.  I want to hit a few highlights that really stood out to me about FAVOR.

First, in verse 12, we see that Moses notes that he has found favor with God because God knows him by name.  Just sit and think about that one little fact.  Let's stop and consider this.  Picture some major celebrity--I mean someone you greatly admire--on an award show.   Imagine they make the big win, and in their acceptance speech, they mention you by name.  Wow.  They know YOU?  Okay, now a million times more--because we're not just talking about a celebrity. We're talking the God of creation, the Lord of the Universe, the Name at which every knee will bow.  Yep, He knows you that intimately.  Yet, how often we take that favor shown to us for granted.

The next verse just sings to me as a prayer we could all adopt.  Read Exodus 33:13:

If you are pleased with me, teach me your ways 
so I may know you and continue to find favor with you. Remember that this nation is your people.

Pretty awesome, huh?  Having the ear of God, Moses petitions him to teach him--to help him know the Him.  Moses has a heart seeking God's favor.  I think we see two displays of favor in this verse:  that He would teach us His ways and that He would reveal Himself to us that we may know Him.  I'm afraid that all too often I am skittish about learning his ways, seeing it as a yoke restraining me rather than an outpouring of God's favor.  And, all too often, my heart is content with what I know of him right now--as if that's sufficient.  No need to dig deeper.  Goodness, who knows what radical things might happen then?! 

The next verse (14) reveals two more displays of favor--that God grants us His presence and that He gives us rest.
Something about that giving rest thing sounded strangely familiar, so I looked back at Jeremiah 31:2.  Sure enough, in both Jeremiah 31:2 and Exodus 33:14--two passages about God's favor--God promises to give us rest.  I don't know about you, bloggy friend, but rest feels like a rather precious commodity.  These busy, busy days of mothering and all the demands upon me.  Rest for my body--but I believe God wants even more to give us rest for our soul.  Rest from the stress, the discouragement, the pain, the angst, the wounds, the struggles.  

Glimpse of grace:  I feel as though I am bringing you along at a snail's pace here.  But, I don't want to miss an ounce of the richness of this passage--or the incredible new revelations about grace.  The rest of Exodus 33 is so good--I just have to let us chew on it tomorrow so we can sit and dwell on today's truths about grace--about God's favor.  To summarize, God shows us favor by:

knowing us by name
teaching us His ways
allowing us to know Him
His presence
giving us rest

These are all things I tend to take for granted--the yeah, yeah things of walking with the Lord.  But, if there is one thing I am realizing about grace it's this.  I can see it as this huge lofty thing--amazing grace how sweet the sound.  Or, I can really look under a microscope and see a hub of activity and details that my naked eye tends to miss.  Lord, gives us eyes today to really see your favor in the tiniest of the day's details!  Give us an appreciation and gratitude for the million ways you show us favor!

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