Our Exodus journey continues with another pivotal event: Moses’s burning bush encounter with God. (Click here to read this week’s passage.) In the popular imagination, this is one of those amazing moments when there can be no mistaking what’s going on. We call these occurrences “theophanies,” where the divine presence is manifested so vividly no questions are necessary. Who else can it be, but God? What else could one do, but say yes? How else could one feel other than totally sure? For goodness sakes, this is a flaming bush that doesn’t burn up, in a voice that comes from nowhere, and knows everything about Moses, his people, and their situation. “I’ve seen… I’ve heard… I know,” the voice says (Ex. 3:7). Not much to question there.
Except Moses has lots of questions and plenty of doubts, not only in the viability of God’s strategy, but also in his own ability to pull it off. If Moses struggles, we shouldn’t be too hard on ourselves if we’re taken aback when the Spirit speaks to us, reminds us who we are, what we need to do, and why we’re essential to God’s work in the world.
The call to stand for all that is just and against anything that smacks of injustice is every bit as real for us as it was for Moses. And if we suppose a burning bush and voice from on high would give us the necessary oomph to do this work, let’s look more closely at Exodus 3 and 4. Soon enough, Moses will become the prophetic mediator, increasingly overshadowed by the bright lights of divine revelation and guidance (as happens to most prophets). Right here, on this mountain, where God is speaking and God’s relentless nature is revealed in a fire that refuses to burn out, Moses is remarkably human—so like us it’s uncanny.
This Thursday, we’ll revisit the burning bush with new eyes and ears. Hopefully a closer look at Moses will raise new questions about ourselves. When God’s Spirit calls, how do we respond? How often do we reject the idea God would ever call on us, given our uncertainties and inadequacies and the size of the task before us? How quickly do we fall into the same groove that Moses falls into: You need somebody else. Nobody’s going to care what I say. I’m not equipped for this. How easily we forget about Moses! How easily we discount God’s faith in us and undervalue faith we need in ourselves!
Don’t miss our next chapter in Exodus: The Greatest Coming Out Story Ever Told! We meet this Thursday at 7:30p CDT. See you then!
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Peace and blessings,
We need your help!
As we think about the future of Gather, please let us know what gifts you bring and would like to share with the community. There are many roles that have to come together to make Gather happen every week. This includes setup, technical support, worship, managing handouts and information, coordinating drinks, and teardown. We need your help. Please let us know what type of service you’d be interested in!
Watch God Work,
Tim & Shea
As we prepare to become a vibrant worshipping community, we invite you to enjoy a Spotify playlist that captures the kind of worship we hope to embrace. Give it a spin while you’re driving. Make it your workout jam. Add it to your devotional time. Most of all, feel yourself becoming part of a sacred village of believers who love their God and one another!
Check out the Gather Worship Playlist here.