Open Spaces

Read: Exodus 33:1-11
Inside the Tent of Meeting, the Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as one speaks to a friend (Exodus 33:11).

Dr. Richard Swenson in his book Margin writes, “We must have some room to breathe. We need freedom to think and permission to heal. Our relationships are being starved to death by velocity. . . . Our children lay wounded on the ground, run over by our high-speed good intentions. Is God now pro-exhaustion? Doesn’t He lead people beside the still waters anymore? Who plundered those wide-open spaces of the past, and how can we get them back? There are no fallow lands for our emotions to lie down and rest in.”

Does that resonate? We desperately need more open spaces, more quiet moments with God for healing, and restoration. This is something that Moses lived out well. Charged with leading hundreds of thousands of “stubborn and rebellious” people (Exodus 33:5), Moses often withdrew from the challenges of leadership to find rest and guidance in God’s presence. “It was Moses’ practice to take the Tent of Meeting and set it up some distance from camp” (Exodus 33:7). “Inside the Tent of Meeting, the LORD would speak to Moses face to face, as one speaks to a friend” (Exodus 33:11).

Moses made it a practice to meet with God, and he did so away from distraction. And Jesus “often withdrew to the wilderness for prayer” (Luke 5:16). Both He and Moses realized the importance of spending time alone with the Father. And as Moses heard God speak with him as “a friend,” he received the wisdom and help he needed.

We too need to build margin into our lives, some wide and open spaces spent in rest and in God’s presence. Spending time with Him will help us make better decisions—creating healthier margins and boundaries in our life so we have the bandwidth available to love Him and others well.

Let’s seek God in open spaces today.


Why do you need margin in your life? What will you do this week to build into your schedule some open spaces and time spent with God?

Taken from “Our Daily Journey”