“…and there will I plead with you face to face.” Ezekiel 20:35
This is not impatience, frustration, or anger, this is a father who is desperate for the heart of his child! This is an agony which is unmatched by any other grief known to man: that the Almighty God would plead with mankind, and do so face to face (is unthinkable) and yet, that it is what God promised.
Moses, the meekest man who ever lived, was not permitted to see the face of God. But now, Jesus Christ has paid the penalty of man’s sin, and not only can we look our Savior in the face, but we can be clothed in His very self. Can you look Him in the face and resist? Do you recognize your resistance? God so often pleads with mankind, and is so often missed. Moses could not have missed the presence of God if he had tried, but to us, the very face of God has become just another passing shadow on a dulled and hardened conscience.
This pleading of God is personal, because He wants not just a portion, but our very whole selves. I remember the day I sat my “sixteen-year-old, confused self” down on a swing and in utter frustration and desire to be free, cried out “Okay, I will surrender everything if you will let me keep _________.” God said “No. I want it ALL – everything you’ve got!” He would not let me go. His grip grew tighter until I felt I could not go on any longer in this suffocation. He was pleading with me face to face, and when at last I opened my eyes, there He was, and He was so glorious, I felt ashamed that I had not recognized His worth from the beginning. He was worth so much more than anything I could desire to hang onto.
Dear believer, when God pleads with you, look at His face – do not avoid His gaze – and give in to all that He requires.