God’s jealousy for me makes me weep.
Because sometimes it’s just so hard for me to understand why He would care enough about me to be jealous at all.
Because He’s faithful. Even when I am not.
Because He’s merciful. Even when I am not.
Because He’s God. And I am not.
“Do not worship any other god, for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God.” Exodus 34:14
God is jealous, not in the angry, malicious, violent sense, but in the burning, holy, righteous sense. He is zealous for His good Name. And I am His child. I wear His Name.
HIS Name. A Name that makes some people curse and others praise. A Name that makes some shake their fists and others lift their hands. A Name that makes some kick and scream and others bow low. A Name that makes some cringe and others hope.
But no matter how people react, He’s still God and there’s just something about His Name.
My Sunday School class at church is studying, Praying The Names Of God, by Ann Spangler. I love it. I really love it. I love focusing on a different name for God each week. Every day, pondering, reflecting, chewing on the significance of the names, understanding the meaning of the names, and trying to wrap my mind around the character of God.
This morning I’ve been reflecting on El Kanna (EL kan-NAH), Jealous God.
And it’s in my reflecting that I weep.
Because I want to be zealous for the God who is zealous for me. I want to praise, even when my heart is sad. I want to lift my hands, even when my arms are heavy. I want to bow, even when my legs are weak. I want to hope, even when my soul is downcast.
When I’m too focused on my humanity or too distracted by the world, my heart tends to stray and God wants my heart. All of it. That’s why He never lets me stray too far. That’s why He never leaves me where I am. That’s why He never gives up on me. He is mindful in His pursuit of me and I can’t tell you how I rejoice in this knowledge. It’s just a little too wonderful for me.
That’s why I can trust in His Name, El Kanna, and all it represents and all it stirs inside of me.
Because wearing God’s Name reminds me of Whose I am. Bearing His Name reminds me of Who I serve. Calling on His Name reminds me of Who has my heart.
When all I need is found in Christ, why would I want to praise, lift my hands, bow down or hope in anyone or anything else? Ever? Why would I want to let my heart stray when I have a God who loves me so? And, yet, God knows that sometimes I do. That’s why He’s jealous for me.
“I am the Lord; that is My name! I will not give my glory to another, or my praise to idols.” Isaiah 42:8
Yes, God is Jealous God. And rightfully so. His love is perfect and holy, fiercely protective and intensely powerful. His love propels Him to want what’s best for me and guard the part of me that’s most precious to Him.
So, today this is how I pray:
Yes, Father. I will let You be jealous for me. I will let You be zealous in Your love for me. I will let You guide me, grace me, and guard me.
Because I love You, too. And I want to honor You. Because You are faithful. And merciful.
Because I want to give You the glory that is rightfully Yours.
Because You are worthy.
Because You are God. And I am not.