I have a need to box God. To give God a pronoun: Him or Her? To turn God into something tangible, describable, understandable. I have a need to know God as if God is a subject/object to be dissected and studied.
The ancient Hebrews had the same problem. While Moses was up on the mountain, they started to wander off. They needed something they can call God, something real that they can control. Something made in their image. So they made a Cow. (who says the Bible has no sense of humour?) . At least it was a fancy Cow, solid gold.
They worshiped it. They were ready to give their lives for it.
Meanwhile Moses is having a great time with God. Towards the end of the conversation, Moses communicates the same need as his friends down at the foot. He also wants to see God. Like we all do.
But then God shows him nothing but God’s backside. Some old Jews translated it to the “fresh footprints of God”.
That’s all he got, footprints.
We can’t take God home. We can’t carry God around. In the words of Rob Bell, “God is heavy”.
All that we can do is follow the direction in which the footprints are heading.
I have been dragging a Fat Cow around hoping it was God. No wonder I struggle. No wonder I am tired of religion. No wonder I feel disconnected with my True Self.
So today I am letting God out, but the Cow is heading straight for the box.