I use The Cloud on my computer, but please don’t ask me to explain it to you. When I try to understand it – I just get more confused. I don’t comprehend how it can store information for an innumerable amount of people. I can’t see The Cloud. A brilliant group of minds developed it. Can the information be lost? Can it be hacked? Can The Cloud break down somehow???
To me, The Cloud has some of the same characteristics of God. Though evidence of Him is everywhere to me, I can’t actually see Him. His brilliance is beyond my comprehension. Many times I don’t understand His ways. How can He personally meet the needs of billions of people at the same time????
Believe or not, thousands of years ago, the ancient Israelites experienced some of the same feelings. However, God actually appeared to them in the form of a cloud!
The story takes place after the Israelites had been freed by Moses (powered by God) from hundreds of years of being slaves in Egypt. During their long trek through the wilderness to reach their ultimate destination, God asked them to create a tent place of worship called The Tabernacle. Only priests appointed by God could enter it. Anyway, it helped give the Israelites a visual reminder about who was really leading them. But The Tabernacle was portable. Check out this scene from the book of Numbers, Chapter 9:
” . . .the cloud covered the tabernacle, . . . Whenever the cloud was lifted from over
the tent, afterward the sons of Israel would then set out; and in the place where the
cloud settled down, there the sons of Israel would camp. At the command of the Lord
the sons of Israel would set out, and at the command of the Lord they would camp;
. . . Whether it was two days or a month or a year that the cloud lingered over the
tabernacle, staying above it, the sons of Israel remained camped and did not set out;
but when it was lifted, they did set out.” (Numbers 9: 15-22)
Imagine the thoughts and feelings going through the minds of the Israelites:
“Uh, we just unpacked – now we have to leave again?”
“Last time He only took a day to move us – now we’ve been waiting for several months and nothing is happening!”
“Why is God treating us this way, is this some type of game to Him?”
“I feel like I have no control over my life.”
“Maybe it wasn’t so bad in Egypt after all . . .”
Sound familiar? If we’re honest, we’d probably have felt the same way. And if we’re completely honest, we probably feel some of those things now.
We can do one of two things with response to God as “The Cloud.”
We have the choice to either experience frustration or freedom.
Similar to the Israelites, the frustration lies in trying to figure out God’s timetable, thinking that we could do things better our way, and becoming impatient with Him.
The freedom lies in knowing that someone with unending power is in control. He does have a plan and a path for my life. He wants me to trust Him moment by moment. It would be nice to have a “rough draft” for the next several months or years, but He doesn’t work that way.
BTW – one of my family’s favorite activities is to marvel at the cloud formations and take pictures. The clouds are artistic, creative, peaceful, different every day, and create an internal sense of wonder – just like God 🙂