"Then he said to Him, “If Your presence does not go with us, do not lead us up from here." Exodus 33:15
After the Lord smote the children of Israel for their disobedience and idolatry, the Lord commanded Moses to resume the journey with the children of Israel through the wilderness to the Promised Land. God reiterated that He would drive out the Canaanite, the Amorite, the Hittite, the Perizzite, the Hivite, and the Jebusite. The Lord promised that His presence would go with Moses and give him rest, but the Lord told Moses that if He would accompany the children of Israel on their journey, He would destroy them because they were stubborn people.
When the children of Israel became aware of what the Lord had spoken, they went into mourning. Moses interceded on their behalf and pleaded that the Lord’s presence would not only be with him but with the children of Israel as well. Moses went on to say that if the presence of the Lord did not go with them, he did not want them to leave Mount Sinai. Without the presence of the Lord, Moses knew that they would be alone, in great darkness, lost, without hope, and left to their own demise.
So often we are in a hurry to exit one season so that we can quickly enter the next in hope of better or more favorable circumstances. Moses and the children of Israel were in the wilderness, which was a place of desolation. Yet, Moses would rather have remained in an uncomfortable, barren, desert if it meant that the Lord’s presence would be with them. Moses knew that in the presence of the Lord there is perpetual fellowship with the Lord, fullness of joy, peace, provision, safety, hope that does not disappoint, and most importantly His love, which nothing can separate us from.
What is the Lord’s presence worth to you? Would you sacrifice having the Lord’s presence for something menial or temporary? Nothing can compare with the constant presence of the Lord. If it means walking away from what you think you desire that is not in the will of God, choose to remain in the will of God. Our every decision and action should derive from Moses’ earnest plea, not without You Lord.
"Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain,