The Burning Bush

Oct 23rd, 2011 by Birdie in Faith, Life, Musings

God saw the people of Israel—and God knew.

Now Moses was keeping the flock of his father-in-law, Jethro, the priest of Midian, and he led his flock to the west side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. And the angel of the LORD appeared to him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush. He looked, and behold, the bush was burning, yet it was not consumed. And Moses said, “I will turn aside to see this great sight, why the bush is not burned.” When the LORD saw that he turned aside to see, God called to him out of the bush, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” Then he said, “Do not come near; take your sandals off your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.” And he said, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” And Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God.

—Exodus 2:25-3:5

Today has been a full day. It started early this morning with Focal Point, the class my church holds for those who are looking to become official ministry partners, and from there I went to the service, and then to the ESL tutor training course Community Fellowship is hosting in conjunction with Wheaton Bible Church. I came home for a grand total for half an hour for dinner, and then I went back for the college group/young adult group worship.

The message tonight was a strong one, and one that I find extremely pertinent to life today. We read the Old Testament and see moments like God in the burning bush speaking to Moses, and we wonder why it doesn’t happen anymore, why it feels that God is so far from us when He is supposed to be so near.

Our teaching pastor, Mitchel, proposed the God does show himself, He does give us burning bushes every day, we just need to pay attention to them. We need to make the conscious decision to see them, and to turn towards them. That person that you met in passing in the bathroom, that coworker you lashed out at, the person that sat across from you in class… They can all be your burning bush. You need only pay attention to the Spirit’s stirrings.

And then he asked us to close our eyes and think back over the last week and ask God if we missed the burning bushes he sent us. And there they were, clear as day, burning bright at the edges of my mind.

The coworker I snapped at out of a place of deep-seated jealousy and bitterness was there, convicting me of a dozen flaws, not the least of which are jealousy and bitterness themselves. The subsequent conviction to apologize despite my overwhelming reluctance was there, too, helping me to acknowledge that there are many things that I need to change. And the lightness of spirit I felt when I gave that genuine apology… What delicious fruit that was.

The woman I spoke to in passing in, of all places, the bathroom at church was there as well, preparing the way for the next burning bush to come, and pushing me to step outside my comfort zone and reach out to all of the people around me. They are all friendly and genuine, despite that niggling fear in the pit of my stomach that they will reject me or find me abrasive or boring or obnoxious. I just have to put myself out there.

And the wonderful woman who sat across from me today in my ESL tutoring class was there, a bright beacon reminding me that God is always faithful, and He does answer our prayers. He did hear my cries of loneliness, of listlessness, and of the incredible desire for friends, and today, He gave me an incredible blessing. She is very much like me, and I am so thankful to God for putting her in my path, and for making her one of my burning bushes this week.

What have your burning bushes been this week? Have you been watching and listening for them? They are there, believe me. You need only open your eyes and your hearts.

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