We begin the sixth month, Elul, today. It is so important for us to embrace what the Lord has for us during this time period. This is the last month of the old year where we prepare ourselves for the fall feasts--Rosh Hashanah (The New Year), Yom Kippur (The Day of Atonement), and Succot (The Feast of Tabernacles). The yearly cycle of the Lord's feasts is meant to bring us into intimacy with Him. If we have followed the Lord's leading we have been prepared to enter the Most Holy Place where we can tabernacle with God.
What I love about this month is that the Lord does not sit and wait for us to come to Him; He comes to us. Elul is the month where God makes Himself especially accessible. The Hebrew people would say, "The king is in the field!" Do not miss this! During Elul the King of kings comes to where you live. Look for the manifestation of the Lord in your home, workplace and church. He wants to be part of your daily activities.
Here is the way I picture it. The King has been eagerly waiting for our visit. But, He is so excited about the prospect of being with us that He decides to come to us and participate in our daily lives. He observes what brings us joy. He sees what we need. He comes to give us an invitation to meet at His place where He has prepared a lavish table for us.
God has always desired to dwell among His people. In Exodus 25 God is giving Moses instructions on how to build the tabernacle. The Hebrew word for this is mishkan which comes from the verb meaning "to dwell." The word could be translated "dwelling place" or "habitation." And, in fact, Jesus coming to earth is a perfect picture of how the King left His world to tabernacle or dwell among us.
It is interesting to me that Elul is linked with the Hebrew letter YOD which means "God has appointed mercy from His hand." Indeed, if we look back to the days of Moses we can see how God extended mercy to the Israelites. When Moses came down from Mt. Sinai he was so angry with the people for worshiping the golden calf that he threw the tablets God had engraved to the ground so that they broke to pieces. He went back to the Lord to make atonement for the Israelites and asked God to have mercy on His people. Then God invited Moses to return to Mt. Sinai with two new stone tablets so that He could rewrite the words of His covenant on the new tablets. In addition, He tells Moses that He is the Lord who is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in love and faithfulness. (Exodus 34:6)
God has always desired fellowship with us--so much so that we were created in His image. It started in the Garden of Eden where God made Adam and Eve living beings. His great joy was walking in the cool of the evening with the people He created. He still delights in fellowshipping with us and has set up Kairos times to manifest His Presence. This is the month to run to Him. The passion to connect with the Lord is expressed by the Shulamite and Daughters of Jerusalem in Song of Solomon 1:4. "Draw me! We will run after you!" (AMP) The Lord is waiting for us to acknowledge Him. Run to Him!
Joan E. Mathias