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Everyone Has Their Favorites

Everyone Has Their Favorites

And the LORD said to Moses, “This very thing that you have spoken I will do, for you have found favor in my sight, and I know you by name.” Exodus 33:17

Like all of you, I simply like some people more than others. We all have our favorites. In my work life for instance, there’ve always been those who do their job well, don’t complain, and are kind and loving towards their patients and coworkers. I much prefer to work with someone like that than someone who shirks responsibility, complains all the time, and is generally difficult. Now, imagine a scenario in which those two people – the one who does their job and the one who doesn’t – both came to me and asked for something that only one of them can have. To which one am I more likely to say yes? If all other things are equal, I’m prone to choose the one I like more.

We generally think of favoritism as being wrong and certainly can be if it causes us to engage in unjust behavior. If I oversaw the physician’s schedule and gave all the good shifts to my friends and all the weekend shifts to everyone else, that wouldn’t be fair. If, however, a physician does their job, doesn’t complain, and treats others with kindness, I simply like that individual more. That’s not wrong.

So, does God play favorites? God is always just, but today’s passage certainly suggests that God has those whom he favors over others. In the passage, we’re told how Moses spent time talking to God face to face, as a man speaks to his friend (Exodus 33:11). Moses obeyed God, followed his will, and invested tremendously in the relationship. So, when Moses went to God, asking for something, God was inclined to grant that request, because Moses had found favor in his sight.

Many of us only go to God, asking something of him when we’re experiencing some trial. Then, when our lives are going smoothly, we ignore him completely, living however we want. We invest nothing in a relationship with God. We don’t follow his will. And we complain to him only when things aren’t going our way. Then, we wonder why God seems distant. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you (James 4:8). If we desire an intimate relationship with God, and if we desire that he answer our prayers, then we must daily invest in our relationship with him. God is never unjust, but it is certainly his prerogative to favor those who love and follow him.

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