Caressing the Face of God
There are people who read my blog who have known me my whole life or their whole life. There are people who read who knew me a long time ago, but we don’t really keep up. There are those who know me from a distance and some whom I’ve never even met. That’s an interesting factor in blogging – in all types of written communication really. You can read this blog every week and get to know a lot about me, but never really develop a relationship with me.
I often wonder how true that is in our relationships with God. Maybe you’re stronger than I am if you’ve never been haunted with the question of if you fit into that category that says, “Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?'” Only to have the Lord say, “’I never knew you.’” (Matthew 7:22-23)
The truth is that I could read my Bible 24/7 and study all kinds of Christian books and end up knowing all about God. But that wouldn’t mean I know Him. That’s not what I want; how about you? Sadly, getting to know someone is not always something we feel like investing in. We want to have coffee once or twice with someone and say we know them. I know my husband because for nearly 27 years we have walked through life – the great times and the heart wrenching. We’ve sat and talked for hours, but we’ve also worked alongside each other. We’ve played and laughed and fought and cried. I know what makes him happy and energized and I know what makes him hurt or discouraged. I know him. I have walked with him.
I want to walk with God. I want to know Him, His heart. I don’t just want to have coffee and chat with Him about the few issues on my mind. I don’t want to interview Him for my blog (“So… God… What’s Your view on patience?”). Let me tell you, I’ve been interviewed before and now I can’t even remember the interviewer’s name! I don’t want to just hear from Him on things that are pertinent to me. I don’t want to have known Him in the past and now only keep in touch at holidays or when I’m in trouble. I want more of a relationship than that with my Abba!
I want to walk with my God as Enoch and Noah did. I want to experience His Presence every moment of my day. I want Him to make His habitation with me. I want God to call me His friend. I want to be like Job who describes his relationship with God as “intimate friendship” (Job 29:4). I want to be taken into God’s confidence like David and Amos (Psalm 25:14, Proverbs 3:32, Amos 3:7, Amos 4:13).
One of my favorite verses that gives such a beautiful picture of intimacy with Abba is found in Jeremiah 26:19. On the surface it says that Hezekiah entreated the Lord’s favor, but if you look at the original Hebrew it literally says that Hezekiah “stroked His face” or “patted His cheek.” Is there a more intimate picture? Metaphorically speaking, Hezekiah was not only close enough in proximity, but relationally close enough to approach the God of the universe and stroke His face! I picture myself just crawling up into His generous lap and, in peace, stillness and adoration, caressing the face of God. This is my heart’s deepest desire and highest aspiration.
“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:13