“The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God,
slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness”
If someone were to announce your arrival by describing your personality what would they say? Maybe they would announce you with phrases like hard working, honest and kind, lovely to be with? Or maybe there would be some less flattering descriptions; has a short fuse, doesn’t suffer fools gladly, holds a grudge. For most of us a good description of our character on any given day would probably involve a mixture of good and bad traits.
When God passes by Moses on that holy mountain the words he uses to describe himself are astounding. He could have given his credentials as maker of heaven and earth, the only Holy God, immortal, never changing. All these are true, and yet when God describes himself to Moses all his characteristics relate to his utter love for us. A holy God can only be compassionate, gracious and slow to anger if he loves completely his fragile, failing and sinful sons and daughters. The amazing truth is that God chooses to define his character by how he relates to us! Just think about that for a moment- the creator of the universe wants to be known as a God with compassion for his people, a God who is gracious and understanding, a God who is slow to anger even when his people are so easily led into sin, and always faithful.
How would God describe himself when it comes to you this advent?
“The Lord, the Lord, who is compassionate to…., and abounds in love and faithfulness for them, even when they don’t recognize it.
This is the God who reaches out to us this Christmas.