Good Evening, God!
Michael Card has written a book exploring the Hebrew word Hesed. This word is used throughout the Bible and it has no simple English definition. So each of the main definitions gets a chapter. I am only in the third chapter — the Slow to Anger aspect of God. But, I was struck by the story of the 12 spies going into the Promised Land to check it out. Two (Caleb and Joshua) came back saying that it was truly a land of milk and honey.
But, ten came back saying that the people in the land are BIG and STRONG and live in fortified cities. Maybe even some were Nephilim (giants and perhaps not fully human.) Those ten spies were scared. And very quickly ALL the people were terrified! They even wanted to select a new leader to take them BACK into slavery in Egypt.
Then God You ask Moses, “How long will these people despise me?” The Hebrew word for despise can also mean abandon. The author says that by “abandoning God we reject him and willfully place ourselves outside of his hesed (lovingkindness.)
WOW! Just recently I have been pondering how it is God, that You wait to be invited in to help us. In Centering Prayer the sacred word is sacred only because it is the SYMBOL of our intention to consent to Your Indwelling Spirit’s presence and action within us. Consent!
Given that line of thinking — I can see that despising — abandoning — doubting You, God — might sort of shut the door on Your helping us. You have given us Free Will. And You seem determined to respect that.
This is making me think.