Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Is He Here or Not?

"Is the Lord among us or not?" Exodus 17:7b
They were just released from hundreds of years of slavery, walked across the Red Sea on dry ground while they watched the Egyptians and their chariots drowned in the waves behind them, received breakfast manna from heaven every morning and quail for dinner every night without lifting one finger. Now the Israelites were thirsty. You would think they'd get it by now. God was providing, watching out for them. But, no. They raised their fists to Moses and complained...again...saying, "Is the Lord among us or not?"

Is that not like us today? One day we're raising our hands to heaven in praise and the next, when life throws us a curve ball (like long, snowy, wintry days with leaky roofs) those same hands turn into fists and we complain, "Are you really there, God?" What's wrong with us? Just like Moses, I picture Jesus turning to God and asking in a Yiddish accent, "What am I to do with these people?"

Jesus (God in human form) walked this earth among us, ate with us, worked with us, performed miracles for us, took our punishment and died for us yet, we still dare to wonder if God is with us or not. Scripture is filled with God-with-us stories; real life encounters of men and women personally experiencing God.

None of us living today have seen Jesus face-to-face, but just as he promised before he left this earth, he sent us his Comforter, the Holy Spirit to live in us. He is that still small voice we think sometimes is our own, but kinder and wiser. He is still among us.

If we stop a few minutes, look over our day, our week, our month or our year we can point to our own God-with-us moments. We need to draw our faith and our strength from those moments in time. Those moments are what builds our faith so we don't drown in the waves of life. Take some time today to stop, recall your own God-with-us moments. Journal them somewhere so you can turn to them on days when you start to wonder, "Is He here or not?" Then, you'll have something that reminds you, "Yes, yes He is!"

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