The story of Moses found in Exodus is one I find very interesting. The idea of meeting God is daunting to many, including me. I am not out running around trying to avoid God necessarily, but I often do not pay enough attention to see a bush that is on fire without being consumed. I have sat around many fire rings in Texas or out camping. I have even had a small fire at the fire ring we have at the parsonage where Linda and I sat around enjoying the night air. I would have used the word brisk, but with the current cold spell sweeping the nation 55 degrees would be a heat wave for many. I have never seen wood not burn up, unless it is one of the gas fireplace logs, but they are not made of wood.
I feel I have heard God’s voice on a couple different occasions, unless of course it was the voices in my head screaming so loud that I heard them through my ears. When I was young I was sitting in the garage of the house we lived in Flagstaff, Arizona I did hear a voice that told me that God had great plans for me. I really wasn’t interested because I was trying to get a bike modified so I could go faster. In fact I remember telling God that I would listen if he would just make the parts I was working with fit together. Well, that never happened. In the Story of Moses and the burning bush (Exodus 3) Moses checks out the burning bush that is not being consumed and God stops him from coming closer telling him he is standing on Holy Ground. I never heard that I was on Holy Ground, but just as Moses I had plenty of reasons why God’s plan wouldn’t work, mostly having to do with my lack of ability. In all honesty I never thought about whether it was possible with God or not. I do not recall the details of what God’s plan was when I heard his voice, I did not listen, I had better things to do at that moment.
God told Moses he had seen his people, heard their cry, and that God knows their pain. We can easily look at our world today and wonder if God is not looking anymore. There are so many injustices, there are so many crying out and in pain. Is God listening?
While I like to think God could change everything in with a snap of the Holy Fingers, it doesn’t seem to work that way. God changes people and the injustice of the world through people who are willing to stop their routine day (whatever that is) and seek an encounter with God; those who are paying enough attention to see a bush burning, but not being consumed. In the story of Moses and his encounter with God at the burning bush God tells Moses that God has seen the oppression of the people, heard their cries of injustice, and knows their pain. Then God tells Moses that I am sending you. When we see oppression, injustice and pain in the world could that be our burning bush that is not being consumed? Could God be calling the church to respond? Is the church like Moses some days, more willing to give reasons why WE can’t do what God is wanting to do through us? Something to think about.