Faith & Family

Oh, to be on that mountain!

Avatar photo

Dylan Castle

In Exodus 24:12-18, the Lord said to Moses, “Come up to me on the mountain and wait there, that I may give you the tablets of stone, with the law and the commandments, which I have written for their instruction. Then Moses went up on the mountain, and the cloud covered the mountain. The glory of the Lord dwelt on Mount Sinai, and the cloud covered it six days. And on the seventh day he called to Moses out of the midst of the cloud. Now the appearance of the glory of the Lord was like a devouring fire on the top of the mountain in the sight of the people of Israel. Moses entered the cloud and went up on the mountain. And Moses was on the mountain 40 days and 40 nights.”

Is it possible to read a passage such as this and not wish to have been there in person? Imagine, first of all, hearing the voice of God calling you into His very presence. No doubt His voice was familiar. The Voice from the burning bush. The Voice that defeated the greatest that man could offer with miraculous ease. The Voice that led millions to freedom. The Voice that protected and provided in a barren land. This wonderfully awesome Voice that you had heard so many times now asks you to join Him.

Imagine your response. While there had been many conversations in the past, something about this seemed different. This time, He was specific about how you would approach Him and who could come with you; yet, they could only go so far. They would not be allowed to join you in His presence. You would be there entirely on your own. A heavy sense of responsibility would be felt with this encounter as He spoke of instructions that needed to be passed on. No doubt some fear, or at the very least uncertainty, would be creeping into your mind; yet, simultaneously, there would be a sense of willingness to serve. 

While we may wish to have been in that desert, at the foot of that mountain, to hear that powerful and precious Voice call us into His presence, the reality is that we are actually being called here and now. His presence is available to us if we just follow His voice. We do not need a desert place. We do not need a towering mountain. We simply need a sensitive ear.

Unfortunately, we have allowed much into our lives that clouds our hearing. Like a bad case of tinnitus, the ringing of the world around us impedes our ability to hear the voice of God. We push our kids to pursue sports, dance, and all kinds of extra-curricular activities because of the numerous benefits, but they would benefit so much more if their parents and grandparents would pursue the voice of God. We seek training, certifications, and promotions in hopes that we can provide a better life for those around us, yet there is no provision greater than being led by one who seeks the voice of God. We drive ourselves to near exhaustion helping and serving those around us because there are so many that are worse off, but how much greater our purpose would be if we were driven by the voice of God.

If we would simply remove some of the distractions and correctly prioritize the responsibilities we have, we would discover that the tinnitus starts to fade away and the voice of God comes in clearer and stronger. Only when we begin to hear the voice of God, will we be able to come into the presence of God. Once in the presence of God, nothing will be the same.

Imagine a family, church, and community filled with those who dwell in His presence: the boldness to stand for what is right; the willingness to serve; the humility to admit when there is wrong; the love for truth; and, the kindness to all people.

This can be a reality, but our desire for the voice and presence of God must truly be the sole desire of our hearts. A desire that consumes all that we are. A desire unlike any other.

May we purpose today to listen for the voice of God and pursue His presence.

Dylan Castle is a pastor of a Macon/Jackson County home fellowship.