Preparation— Did you remember to bring stone tablets? Before you arrive in the Presence, are you even thinking of stone tablets?
“Stone tablets? No, I can clearly say it never occurred to me,” one disciple replied.
“The Lord said to Moses, ‘Chisel out two stone tablets like the first ones, and I will write on them the words that were on the first tablets, which you broke’” (Exodus 34:1).
Personally, I have at times sought soul-silence before addressing the LORD. I have done so with an awareness that spiritual contact is no cheap ticket. However, I never included stone tablets in those moments of preparation. Just imagining, your experience is similar to my own.
Audience— Access to the Sovereign is a high and holy privilege. However, Moses received a direct instruction before an audience, an invitation calling him to approach the Holy One. He appears before the One we know as the Father—Creator, Sustainer, Life-giver, the One Who brings justice to all (Exodus 34:7 and Isaiah 6).
“The Lord said to Moses… ‘Be ready in the morning, and then come up on Mount Sinai. Present yourself to me there on top of the mountain. No one is to come with you or be seen anywhere on the mountain; not even the flocks and herds may graze in front of the mountain’” (Exodus 34:2-3)
Task— Afterwards, Moses has a task. The account reads, “And he [Moses] wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant—the Ten Commandments” (Exodus 34:28b).
God stood near to Moses during those days on Mt. Sinai and we have brief glimpses of the experience. Moses’ times with God included both information as well as preparation. Leadership’s challenges will soon dominate his life.
His task will carry him into Pharaoh’s presence. Moses will be directed in the challenges of establishing as a nation, this wandering mass of humanity. The task takes a lifetime and even then, it will not be completed but littered with regrets, obstinate obstacles, compromising challenges and foolishness.
Today, are there specific words of spiritual preparation which apply to appearing before God?
What is comparable to being in the Presence?
As a song of reflection consider Love Ran Red, by Chris Tomlin, 2014. Available as video, lyrics and chords on YouTube as well as other sites.