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  • Writer's pictureGodIsTheArtist

Get Closer

Updated: Jun 8, 2019

And Moses said to the people, "Do not fear, for God has come to test you, and that his fear may be before you, so that you do not sin." So the people stood afar off, but Moses drew near the thick darkness where God was. Exodus 20:20-21 NKJV

This year has been a year of learning and testing which led to total transformation. The person I am today is so far from the person I was this time last year. When 2018 began, I had just discovered that there is more to God than I thought. I was learning how real and tangible He is. I learned the real meaning of words I heard tossed around churches for many years but never really understood like omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent.

As I read Exodus 20 today, I saw myself in the people of Israel in that they had a fear of God's Presence which I could relate to. Verse 18 says, "Now all the people witnessed the thunderings, the lightening flashes, the sound of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking and when the people saw it, they trembled and stood afar off." I totally get this. There were moments this year when I saw God do things that shook me to the core. I saw healings, people filled with His Spirit, shaking and falling. I saw visions and dreamt dreams that spoke of things to come. The Lord used me to speak into other people's lives prophetically. He tested my level of obedience over and over again. There were times when He gave instructions that were easy to follow, other times when I obeyed while sweating and shaking but there were also times when the fear got the best of me and I stood back only to watch God do it anyway through someone else. I think most of the tests that God gave me were for me to overcome fear and learn to trust Him more. There were moments when God spoke to me about His will for my life and to be honest, I instantly felt fear because now that I know what God is capable of, I know that He could do it.

In verse 19 of Exodus 20, the people were so afraid that they distanced themselves from God and asked Moses to be their mediator. They said, "You speak with us and we will hear, but let not God speak with us, lest we die." So many times we look to other people for answers instead of looking to God. It's like the church today looking at the Pastor more than they look to God for direction in their lives. People have such a fear of God's presence that they are hesitant to approach Him for themselves. When did get to this place in our culture. A few weeks ago, we had a guest worship team come to our church for a Sunday service and I felt the Spirit of God so deeply. At the end of service, as they sang the last song, they invited the entire congregation to come to the altar. Not for any reason other than to worship together. It was like time stood still because for what seemed like ten minutes (although it was really more like sixty seconds), no one moved an inch. They then began to look at one another before one person slowly took a step and waited for another person to take a step. Eventually, everyone made their way to the altar but my question was why did it take so long? Why did it take one person to move before the others did? What are we afraid of? Why are we afraid of the altar? The Israelites saw God's power and were so afraid to approach Him that they wanted Moses to go first. What if we stopped waiting for someone else to talk to God on our behalf and got to know Him for ourselves?

Moses said to the people, "Do not fear, for God has come to test you, and that His fear may be before you, so that you may not sin" (Verse 20). Moses, knowing who God is and how God works, tried to encourage those under his care. He is basically saying that the Lord has given the commandments, the tests, the trials, the situations, etc. so that you would get to know Him for yourselves and by knowing Him, you would be less likely to sin against Him. The more I get to know God the less sin rules my life. Yes, I still sin. I am not perfect but the things that used to trap me no longer have the effect they used to. When you spend quality time with God, you will find you have less time for distractions. Moses said, "Do not fear..." You have no reason to fear what God is doing in your life, as a matter of fact, embrace it!

This brings us back to Verse 21, "so the people stood afar off, BUT MOSES DREW NEAR the thick darkness where God was." Even after Moses tried to encourage them, the people still stood back and watched. While they watched, Moses drew closer to where God was waiting. In my opinion, this pretty much sums up the church. There are those who are afraid of the Presence and power of God so they stand back, yet there are others who take the chance to draw even closer to God. That has been 2018 for me. I watched people pull back while God pulled me in closer. I am closer to God now than I have ever been in my life and that has brought me to this place of not only believing but accepting His call on my life. I believe that all god ever wanted was for us to come closer. to want to know Him on an individual level and not only corporately. God wants to talk to YOU... about YOU and yet you're too afraid to look in His direction because of what He may say. With all the fear I felt when I first heard about intimacy with God and what it meant, it wasn't until I had it for myself that the fear went away. I will tell you this, the thing God speaks to me about the most is how much He loves me. Knowing how much Jesus really loves you changes everything.

So in the end, 2018 for me could be best described as the year that I went from standing afar off to drawing closer to the thick cloud where God is. I can't wait to see what 2019 will bring. I am ready for all that God has in store for my life. I am no longer afraid!

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