Posted on Tue, Mar 29, 2011
March 29, 2011 Christine Daniels
18th Day of Lent Exodus 20:18-21
When all the people witnessed the thunder and lightning, the sound of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking, they were afraid and trembled and stood at a distance, and said to Moses, “You speak to us, and we will listen; but do not let God speak to us, or we will die.” Moses said to the people, “Do not be afraid; for God has come only to test you and to put the fear of him upon you so that you do not sin.” Then the people stood at a distance, while Moses drew near to the thick darkness where God was.
Moses drew near to the thick darkness where God was. The rest of the people, though, were afraid, trembled and stood at a distance. Would you be more like Moses or like the rest of the people, if you were faced with the possibility that God wanted to talk to you? If a grand spectacle of sound and fury led you to suspect that God was near, would you stay around to visit with him? Why is God in the thick darkness? Isn’t God supposed to be in the light?
God is good, but that doesn’t mean that God is found only in the light and beautiful places of our lives. God is present in the chaos and storminess of the difficult places of our lives. As inhabitants of the Schenectady area, we spend most of our winter in thick darkness. It can be easy to feel despondent about life. During this time, I try to downplay the bleakness and use the darkness as a time to slow down and center myself. The darkness can be welcome, like the nightfall after a busy day. We can fall into God’s presence in the thick darkness, the way that we fall into a warm, comfortable bed at night.
Creator, Redeemer and Sustainer God, we confess that we frighten too easily, forgetting that you are always present in the thunder and lightning. We thank you for all the times of our lives, both bleak and joyful. Please help us in this Lenten season to draw near to the thick darkness where we will find you. We ask this in Jesus’ name, Amen
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