Memo 1114: The Look
When I was a child, I knew when my mother was displeased because she would give me "the look." She didn't have to raise her voice or say anything for that matter. All I needed to do was catch a glimpse of "the look" and I knew that I either had to stop doing what I was doing or start doing something I wasn't—or else. The look told me everything I needed to know. I always think of "the look" when I read these verses in Psalm 27:
Hear my voice when I call, Lord; be merciful to me and answer me. My heart says of you, “Seek his face!” Your face, Lord, I will seek. Do not hide your face from me, do not turn your servant away in anger (Psalm 27:7-9).
As we continue to search for PowerPoints for Living to help us live and enjoy the abundant life, let's look at these verses more closely this week.
FACE TO FACE
David's heart was directing him to seek God's face. That meant he would come to God with nothing obscuring who David was or what he was going through at the moment. He was to come as God had created him—a musician, a warrior, a leader, a king. A letter to God could have been written by someone else, or the meaning could easily have been distorted or misunderstood by the lack of physical presence that could help clarity the meaning of what was written. So David came in person as he was.
A face-to-face meeting is usually an open and honest one. There's an exchange that ensures both parties understand where the other is coming from. Face-to-face communication is preferable because body language and posture, voice inflections, tone, and even dress are all part of what people can use to get their point and message across to others. Face-to-face meetings with God, however, are not like any other, as we learn from Moses' encounters with the Lord:
When Moses finished speaking to them, he put a veil over his face. But whenever he entered the Lord’s presence to speak with him, he removed the veil until he came out. And when he came out and told the Israelites what he had been commanded, they saw that his face was radiant. Then Moses would put the veil back over his face until he went in to speak with the Lord (Exodus 34:33-35).
When they met, there was a transaction that occurred between Moses and God that was more than words, ideas, and feelings. God imparted who He was to Moses and Moses became radiant like God, to the extent that "they [the leaders] were afraid to come near him" (Exodus 34:30). Even Moses' brother Aaron was hesitant to come near Moses because of his radiance.
READ THE LOOK
And now we are to follow in the footsteps of David and Moses as Paul instructed us: "And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit "(2 Corinthians 3:18). The goal is not to get our laundry list of needs met when we pray, but to transformed into His image. We are to be so close and intimate that we can "see His face" and read His look without Him saying a word, just like Peter did:
And the Lord turned and looked at Peter. Then Peter remembered the word that the Lord had spoken to him: “Before the rooster crows today, you will deny Me three times.” And he went outside and wept bitterly (Luke 22:61-62).
Seeking God's face isn't a religious phrase or ritual. It's a consistent practice during which you are looking to be transformed into God's image by picking up on His slightest suggestion and desire. Therefore, this week's PowerPoint for Living is,
Those who are living an abundant life come to God as they are, not as they are pretending to be. As they do, they are transformed into even more of who God wants them to be.
Is God's transforming power working in your life? Are you a different person, a better version of you than you were last year at this time? When you seek God do you seek Him for what you can get or what you can become? Maturity is being sensitive to read and obey God's look as you seek Him. If your heart, like David's, is telling you to seek Him, then I urge you to do so with all your strength, knowing that His response may be more subtle than overt. Have a blessed week!