So, did I leave you feeling a little uncomfortable the other day? Standing in the full presence of holy God is pretty nerve-racking and confidence-killing. I avoid being in this position like the plague (sorry, couldn't help myself), but I'm beginning to think I need to go there more often.
Like I said when I started my thoughts the other day, we've been in the book of Exodus in Sunday school, too. On Sunday we covered how God instructed Israel to build the tabernacle. We were asked why God prescribed such a precise plan, and we began to talk about how each article and piece of furniture pointed to Jesus. The tabernacle was a picture of salvation. If they got the details wrong, we would have ended up with a skewed image or message of the coming Messiah.
I realized I ended up with a skewed image anyway. For the first time, I began to see something else in God's blueprint -- Holiness. The precision of God's masterplan creates order and speaks to our unworthiness and His holiness. Build it this big, facing this way, with a curtain here, the cherubs in this posture, made from the finest materials and craftsmanship Earth has to offer. Build in silence, enter this way, with this sacrifice, at only this exact time, after you have washed like this, prayed like that....In other words, be very careful how you approach Me. Approach Me, but don't forget that I am holy.
I began to realize I'm way to casual with my God. The rent veil, the invitation to the Holy of Holies, the new residence of the Holy Spirit...it all feels like so much relief from being so uncomfortable in our separation from God and our un-holiness. This new communion is so wonderful I never again want to think about the holiness of God because of how dreadful it makes me feel. And I haven't, really. I know He's holy in the back of my mind somewhere, but all that unpleasantness is behind me now. It's all good.
Me and Jesus, we're best friends now. I've got unfettered access to the throne room of God -- and I like it, a lot. Watch this. Pretty cool - I can just barge right in any time I want, run right up to his throne and jump in my Father's lap. HE LOVES ME!! Yippee!
It's okay if He hasn't seen me in a while. He understands, I'm just busy. I'm a princess now, ya know. I'm redecorating, meeting the neighbors, getting familiar with the lay of the land. He's a big God, he's not threatened when I worry instead of trust. Or when I forget to pray or be thankful. It's okay; He forgives me. I'm his daughter, after all. When things don't go my way or I have to actually wait for something, I pitch a fit. I might as well be honest with Him -- He knows my heart anyway.
And when I do jump in His lap, it makes His day. I pray, and sing His praises. It's great to be so close to Him. I joke and laugh sometimes. We're very close.... Sometimes, I even forget He's God....
Why is it so hard to be intimate with a holy God? When I see holy, intimacy won't come. When I am intimate, I close my eyes to his Holiness. But He really does want an intimate relationship. And He really is holy. How can I see two sides of this coin at the same time?
Oh, for a thousand tongues to sing my gratitude that Holy-He invites me in. I pray familiarity would no longer breed contempt. I can no longer bound into His throne room as if I'm entitled. I never want to stop being awed that I can -- and I do -- traverse burning Holy Ground, barefoot, without being consumed. And when I leap into his most holy open arms, I want to be caught and held close by a delighted Consuming Fire.