I’ve found that my wrap-up posts, after a conference weekend away, are some of my hardest. There is so much emotion tied up with so much information, that it’s very hard to articulate what resonates in my heart. However, the writing it out not only lets you know what happened, but helps me process it all myself. It’s worth perseverance, so here is my attempt.

Living Proof Live with Beth Moore is one of my favorite Christian conferences – always has been, and I suspect it always will be. To my mind, she is one of the quintessential bible teachers of our time – not because she’s “all that” or more gifted than anyone else – but because God has healed her from deep brokenness through the power of His Word, and through that, has given her a platform for “such a time as this” to teach others how to study, understand and apply that Word to their own lives. She knows how to “break it down” so we can let it “build us up.”

This weekend, she taught from Exodus, where Moses had just asked the Lord to “show me Your glory.” Because a full view of His glorious face would cause death, He told Moses that He would pass by him, protect Him in the cleft of the rock and that He would see His back. The next day, the Lord fulfilled His promise to Moses, and as He passed, He disclosed Himself to Moses through verbal description. Following is what He said:

The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children and their children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation.
Exodus 34:6-7 NIV

God disclosed Himself to Moses, and He discloses Himself to us today. But are we altered by it? Do we allow it to change us to the point that He would be inclined to disclose MORE and MORE? As we go through what He told Moses about Himself, breaking each attribute down (I will include the points that hit me most), we can internalize it and allow it to alter us, preparing ourselves to be shown His glory again and again.

1. God is Abounding in Love As humans, we know how to love, but we are not love itself. Jesus is. To love less, He’d have to BE less, which is simply not possible. If we are at our lowest point, and can only remember one thing about our Lord, there is one phrase that is the foundation of His being…Jesus Love Me, THIS I know.

2. God Maintains His Love The Hebrew for “maintains” is the same word used in Proverbs 4:23 for “guard” your heart. To guard is to protect, keep, behold and watch. We typically use it in terms of guarding against something; however, in our key passage, it’s used with the word “love”. God is not guarding against love, He’s guarding for it! He’s promised to maintain or guard His love for us, making sure it never fails or falls short. It makes you think about how you guard your own love in your own relationships…we guard our hearts against things that could damage it or wreak havoc, but are we zealous at maintaining the love that’s in there?

Also important to note is the fact that one of the ways He maintains His love is through discipline. If we are rebellious, He NEVER removes His love or allows it to fail. He DOES, however, remove blessing from us to spur us on to repentance, redemption and ultimate restoration of His blessing.

3. God Teems with Compassion A close look at Jesus shows us the compassion of God. Jesus was sensitive and tender, ministering with unprecedented compassion to the hurting, the hungry, the untaught, the mentally challenged, the outcast – even the dead. Psalm 147:3 tells us that He “binds up and heals the brokenhearted.” The message of the Beatitudes boils down to the compassion of God pouring out on us most when we need Jesus. Interestingly, however, we tend to take our wounding down into our deepest places, but only take God’s compassion – His healing – on the surface. The word “wound” found in Psalm 38:5 and Isaiah 1:6 is “Asab” in the Hebrew transliteration. It is the root word for “idol”. When we don’t take God’s healing down to the deep places of our wounds, our pain can become an idol to us. If the pain was allowed in our path by God, it was to serve us in some way – not the other way around.

4. God is Scandalously Forgiving When God told Moses that He forgives “wickedness, rebellion or sin,” He covered everything that would ever require forgiveness. Wickedness is what we are prone to; rebellion is what we mean to do; and sin is everything that we do that misses the mark, or what we’re bound to do. It’s all there and it’s all covered. How do we allow this knowledge to affect our own ability to forgive? The bottom line is that we are only able to forgive to the extent that we ourselves feel forgiven. If we are not believing God’s promise to forgive EVERYTHING, COMPLETELY, that we could possibly do, then we will not be able to offer the same forgiveness (and freedom) to others and ourselves.

5. God is Inconceivably Gracious We are not only forgiven, we are FAVORED. Sometimes, it doesn’t feel like this is true. He allows times of lack, or a “gap of absence” where there is nothing or no one else that fills our most current and urgent need. Then, He will come through to show Himself as the only one worthy of our praise, showing an amazing and extravagant grace. He goes beyond simply forgiving (as if that wasn’t enough) to prove to us His favor.

6. God is Abounding in Faithfulness Scripture is full of promises and prophecies that God has made. Because of all that have already been fulfilled, we have no reason at all to doubt that the ones that have yet to be fulfilled, WILL. They were not just words spoken to ancient peoples long ago, but ARE words written for US, NOW. The Hebrew transliteration for the word faithful is Emet, which actual means faithful and true. If we believe and embrace that He is the “God of all truth”, we are also agreeing with His faithfulness. And that faithfulness is not just for the world at large…it’s for US, in our own personal every-day…our own situations, large and small.

7. God is Slow to Anger Certainly, given our propensity to sin and the grievous condition of our world, I don’t think a single one of us would blame Him if He took a notion to smite us from existence. But our God is slow to anger. He is, in His own timing
, drawing out the days of the world, waiting for as many people who will to surrender and follow Him. That also means that with every new day we’re given, we have another opportunity to show Him to the lost.

After He shared His glory through His attributes with Moses, He added that other part that seems almost contradictory. If He forgives “wickedness, rebellion and sin,” what does it mean that He “does not leave the guilty unpunished” and then punishes the poor children for the sins of their fathers for generations? We have to remember that forgiveness comes after true repentance. The “guilty” here, refers to those who are unrepentant, persistent sinners. Their hard, unrepentant hearts bring down their own punishment to their children and their children’s children, until someone in that line grasps the glory of God for themselves and breaks the cycle.

I don’t know about you, but I want to see God’s glory in my life, over and over, again and again. I want to be altered by it, so that He doesn’t have to continually repeat Himself, but can trust me with more and more.

For a few pics from the weekend, you can go here!