“[God] said, ‘My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.’ And [Moses] said to him, ‘If your presence will not go with me, do not bring us up from here….Please show me your glory.'” -Exodus 33:14-15, 18
At the time when Moses had this conversation with God, Moses was being asked to lead God’s people on a journey to an exciting but uncertain future. Moses was afraid, and he asked God for some assurance. God gave him the greatest promise a man can receive. God said, “I will go with you.” Could any thing in all creation compare with the presence of the Creator of all things? No way. Moses wanted to make sure, so he said (in my words), “Don’t lie to me. If you aren’t going, just tell me now before I get into trouble.” As long as God was close by, things would be just fine. But if God disappeared, they were in big time trouble. Moses then pushed things a step further. He wanted to see more of God. He prodded, “Show me your glory.”
As we launch out on this journey as new church, I can relate to Moses. I have a strong sense of excitement but when I’m honest I admit that it is mixed with fear. I would love the reassurance that Moses received. God, will you go with us too? Will your presence be found in our worship, in our preaching, in our discipleship groups, in our kids ministry, in our community service, in our evangelism? I agree with Moses: God, if you won’t be with us, don’t send us out!
Then, I’m reminded of the Great Commission, which says, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
This was Jesus’ promise to his disciples and to those that followed in their footsteps. He called them to make authentic disciples, and he promised that he would be with them always. This is our promise that God will go with us in the days ahead. Our mission is “to make authentic disciples of Jesus who live for the glory of God and the good of our world.” We cannot do this alone. We desperately need God’s help, but He promises to go with us.
More than anything else, God is what we need. My prayer is that God would always be with Redemption Church and that God would show us his glory.
As we begin this journey, would you commit to pray with us for the next 30 days? Would you pray like Moses prayed? Would you ask God to always be present with us? Would you ask God to show us his glory?
This post was written by Jeff D. Lawrence, Lead Pastor at Redemption Church.