His Presence

This morning I did a little reading in Exodus and saw this…

Exodus 33:15 “Then Moses said to him, ‘If your presence does not go with us, do not send us up from here.”

God promised Moses he would send his angel before them and guide them to their God-given destination. This is what Moses has been waiting for. This is a win. A huge win. He’s assuring Moses success, but Moses doesn’t want success. He wants God.

When I read this I felt like someone had hit me in the head with a shovel.  Far too often as a leader I make success my God. I make success the destination. I’m willing to make a lot of sacrifices, even some unhealthy ones, if it means achieving success.We’ve all sacrificed things for….

larger church attendance

more money

nicer car

corner office

bigger title

noticeable popularity

Moses reminds us that no amount of success, plans, or dreams are worth it if it means less of God’s presence in your life.

Just a few verses before in verse 11 it says “The Lord spoke to Moses face to face as a man speaks to a friend.” I think Moses had grown so accustomed to God’s presence that it became the most cherished and prized thing in his life. He couldn’t imagine going a moment without it.

Can I be honest? I’m not there… but I want to be. I want to get to that place. I want to get to the place where I want God and His presence in my life more than anything this world has to offer.

How would you feel if God promised you success and victory but without His presence? Have you experienced God’s presence so consistently you can’t live without it?

14 Responses to “His Presence”

  1. Brent Dumler says:

    Pete, I love this. Thanks for your transparency. I’m not there either, but my heart does resonate with Moses’. I’ll take my God’s presence with or without success anyday! The thing I have to continually remind myself is that His definition of ‘success’ is often NOT mine.

  2. Eileen says:

    What a great reminder. So many things have reminded me in the last year of how God’s presence trumps everything else. Years ago, when I was going through a season of starting over, I remember going on a walk with my dogs and conversing with God. I had very little possessions, I didn’t know what tomorrow held….BUT I finally had His peace. And, that meant everything to me. It still does…it’s just hard to hold onto sometimes.

  3. Sharon O says:

    If HIS presence was not with me I would not want to go on. He is the one who guides I cannot do this life alone it is too hard and too disturbing. When we read the news and the stories and see the world in such chaos if we didn’t have HIS hope it would all be despair. No success or victory is worth it if God stepped away. My voice would speak nothing without his hope and his story revealed.
    Yes God is faithful. When I don’t feel it, I need to check my heart and see where I have moved.

  4. Sharon O says:

    If HIS presence was not with me I would not want to go on. He is the one who guides I cannot do this life alone it is too hard and too disturbing. When we read the news and the stories and see the world in such chaos if we didn’t have HIS hope it would all be despair. No success or victory is worth it if God stepped away. My voice would speak nothing without his hope and his story revealed.
    Yes God is faithful. When I don’t feel it, I need to check my heart and see where I have moved.

  5. diane1230 says:

    I want to WANT His presence with me. I want to say that I have never chased after a dream because it felt right even though I wasn’t sure God would be coming with me. I have done that & can’t promise I won’t do it again because it’s easy — the limelight, the this, the that — it can easily fill something inside of you. But, without God’s presence, without God making Himself known to me, it can all pass away in an instant & leave me feeling empty.

    Thanks for the reminder, Pete. Have a wonderful weekend!

  6. Tre Lawrence says:

    PP, well said. I completely admit to allowing God take a back seat to success in my ministry… in the name of doing His will.

  7. Debby Hudson says:

    This verse was the theme of our pastors conference just two weeks ago. A very good verse to set our hearts to. Thank you for the confirmation and bringing it to mind again.

  8. Debby Hudson says:

    This verse was the theme for our pastors conference earlier this month. Thank you for the reminder and confirmation.

  9. Betty says:

    Pastor Pete I wish you would do a sermon on 2 Samuel 6;11 in regard to what it menas to have the Lords presence in our life and how we are blessed when in it there. It is hard sometimes to desire God when you have been brought up to think of him as a punishing, judgemental, critical authorative figure.Instead of the Loving father he is and how by having him dwell in our house what a difference that would make in our lives ( tuning off TV shows that are disgusting,spending time walking and talking to him, refraining from gossip, spending time telling our children about him etc…)

  10. Speaverve says:

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