Exodus 3:1-8 (CEV)
God Speaks to Moses
3 One day, Moses was taking care of the sheep and goats of his father-in-law Jethro, the priest of Midian, and Moses decided to lead them across the desert to Sinai,[a] the holy mountain. 2 There an angel of the Lord appeared to him from a burning bush. Moses saw that the bush was on fire, but it was not burning up. 3 “This is strange!” he said to himself. “I’ll go over and see why the bush isn’t burning up.”
4 When the Lord saw Moses coming near the bush, he called him by name, and Moses answered, “Here I am.”
5 God replied, “Don’t come any closer. Take off your sandals—the ground where you are standing is holy. 6 I am the God who was worshiped by your ancestors Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.”
Moses was afraid to look at God, and so he hid his face.
7 The Lord said:
I have seen how my people are suffering as slaves in Egypt, and I have heard them beg for my help because of the way they are being mistreated. I feel sorry for them,8 and I have come down to rescue them from the Egyptians.
I will bring my people out of Egypt into a country where there is good land, rich with milk and honey. I will give them the land where the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites now live.
And so we end, right back at the beginning, right where it all began. Where God speaks – powerfully, without any doubt it’s him – and putting, quite literally, the fear of God into Moses. God’s light, in the depth of the wilderness, burning, yet not destroying; shining and not going out. There amongst the pain and despair, deep in the wilderness, into Moses’ brokenness. God’s promise that he has heard his peoples cry, and he’s coming to get them.
That is his promise that echoes down through the generations. God speaks it to each person in each place and time. He is coming to rescue, he is born among them, he shines his light – and we each are invited to be a part of that work, for that is how it will spread. God among us, God in us, God shining through us.
God calls us to be part of his promise.
Will I, will you, take up the call?
However inadequate or able, however humble or privileged, whatever our job or standing, whatever we have done or not done. God calls, God promises, God leads.
God of Promise,
God in the depth of the wilderness,
burning, yet not destroying;
shining and not going out.
God among the pain and despair,
into Moses’ brokenness.
that you have
heard your peoples cry,
and you’re coming to get us.
May I allow this to happen,
in your world,
and in palaces;
in places of brokenness
and places of joy;
where there is hope
and where there is despair.
Shine your light Lord,
And when you invite me
to be a part of your work,
and empower me
to take up your call.
Join us reading Walking Backwards to Christmas by Stephen Cottrell from SPCK Publishing this advent. Be part of #adventbookclub, share your thoughts here, on your own blog (and let us know we’ll link to it), on Twitter using #adventbookclub or on the Adventbookclub Facebook page