"I count myself one of the number of those who write as they learn and learn as they write." ~St. Augustine

Thursday, June 2, 2016

My Golden Calves

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I feel a deep, gut-level cringe even as I simply read the title to Exodus 32: "The Golden Calf".  It has taken me two full days to decide "it's time" to dive in.  Every time I open up the Bible, I can feel myself wanting to hide.  This journey through the Old Testament---looking for God's heart--- has been so rich and sweet.  And, I just know, this one is going to be painful.  Exodus 32 is going to hurt.  They are going to hurt God's heart.

God had been with them.  I have just read about Him delivering them.  He has provided for them over and over.  From Exodus 24 onward, He is speaking His words and His ways for them.

And, then... the golden calf.  

When I read the section title alone, I wince and think---What?  How?!  Why?  How did they do this? How did they so quickly turn?   I feel shame for them.  Shock.  Pain.

Less than 10 words into the reading... I get my answer:  How?  Why?

"When they saw that Moses was so long in coming down..."  (Exodus 33:1)

They were impatient.  Simple, as that.  They were tired of waiting.  Impatient.  Maybe, afraid. They just couldn't wait any longer.  Waiting for Moses to bring them God's words, they grew weary...

As I read these words, I am stopped in my tracks.  Oh!  Lord, how often...  how OFTEN, I get impatient.  I get tired of waiting, too.  Praying... asking... waiting... seeking...  and, I, too, grow weary.
 
My culture doesn't lend itself to carved calves from gold.  No, we do other things when we grow tired of waiting on the Lord.   My culture has other paths...  We push harder.  We do.  We do it ourselves.  We medicate.  We think.  We dig.  We plan and organize.  We figure and research.  We buy what we think we need.  We adorn.  We eat.  We drink.  We fill our minds with more.  And/Or, we just give up--- and turn on the television and numb.  Until, we get up, push harder and plan.  Or eat. And, drink.

Oh, how we must hurt God's heart.

...God has been long in coming down and answering my prayers...  

I do get tired.  Impatient.  Afraid...  will Moses ever come down!?  Will God ever answer?  "We don't know what happened to 'that guy'", the Israelites say to Aaron.

So, Aaron... or Google...  make me a god that will take care of me.  I need something here!
I can't wait any longer.

As I sit with the Lord, confessing my impatience to Him, my mind is flooded with verse upon verse... a whisper and breath of Truth bringing light to the moment...

There is another way, Stephanie.  There is another way...  

"Wait for the Lord, be strong and take heart"  (Psalm 27: 14)

"They that wait upon the Lord shall mount up with wings as eagles." (Isaiah 40:31)

"Let us not grow weary of doing good..."  (Galatians 6:9)

"Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him.  Do not worry."  (Psalm 37:7)

There are things I am waiting for and asking the Lord.  Help me, Lord, to choose the way of trust.  Help me to wait for You.  You, Faithful One, have always delivered me.  You have always come through.  Help me to wait for You.  

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