Coming out of this unusual season, you may be asking yourself, “What is next?” I hear God saying, “Step forward into your purpose, and don’t let your circumstances determine your future.” Let’s look at a time when Moses advanced into God’s purpose for his life.
“Moses . . . had led the flock to the back of the desert, and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. And the Angel of the Lord appeared to him in a flame of fire from the midst of a bush . . . Then Moses said, “I will now turn aside and see this great sight, why the bush does not burn.” So when the Lord saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush and said, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” Then He said, “Do not draw near this place. Take your sandals off your feet, for the place where you stand is holy ground.” Exodus 3:1-5, NKJV
THE BUSH DIDN’T BURN UP
As Moses was pasturing sheep, he came to the slopes of Mt Horeb and saw the burning bush that didn’t burn up. It was a small shrub with twigs that were desert-dry and very frail. Yet, it didn’t burn out. God is making a statement here: Once the fire of God comes upon someone that has His purpose, no matter how frail the person, the fire of God does not consume them but remains upon them in order to see the accomplishment of God’s unquenchable purpose.
God’s design and purpose for you has never left His mind. Perhaps you think that you are frail, and you’ve been burned out, But there has not been a burn out of God’s purpose in your life. If you are open to His purpose, you will discover that the glow and the glory of the intended fulfillment of His unquenchable purpose is never extinguished.
This divine encounter takes place on a day when Moses might have thought he would help a group of people be freed from slavery, but now believes he was wrong: I am not “the guy.” But God was getting him ready for advancement in His purpose and He was, in fact, “the guy.”
Presuppositions have a way of neutralizing our perspective of our place in God’s purpose, as well as our readiness and expectation of that purpose. They usually have to do with things that have happened that didn’t work out the way we thought.
God was preparing Moses by getting him familiar with the very ground by which he would bring the people into from Egypt. Perhaps you have gone through things that seem like a setback, delay, or an absence of the fulfillment. God, in His redemptive plan, has the ability to take the pain, difficulties, wounds, and struggles He brought you through and begin to use them to advance you with Him to help people because you have “been there and done that.”
When Moses saw the bush, he turned aside. Things begin to change when God sees that you’re willing to turn aside and to recognize the unusual is at hand. You are not going to experience what God has for you by hanging back. God is saying if you are interested in looking into this, I will meet you.
In the last part of the encounter with God’s presence, God says to Moses, “Take your shoes off.” Trapped up in these words are three truths God is communicating. First, lay aside what you produced. Moses probably made and repaired his own shoes. There is a picture of a man taking off what a man can produce and stepping onto the turf of God’s creation and onto what only God can do. It is not up to us to produce our purpose. God is calling us to come walk with Him.
Secondly, trapped in the soles are residue of the past of where Moses had been. In our own souls, as in our soles, often times there is a hesitancy to move with immediate anticipation of what God would do because the residue in our lives. Our past can get stuck in our souls. God is saying advancing forward into His purpose has to do with confronting those things that would be obstructive to your readiness to move with Him.
Thirdly, advance at His pace. I don’t know about you but the bottoms of my feet are really tender. I walk carefully when I go out barefoot and get the paper in the morning. Taking your shoes off in the wilderness will change your pace rather than the pace you would with your shoes on.
The Lord says, “I’m ready to move with you, will you come with Me? However frail you may be, once the fire of My purpose comes on you, you’re going to end up in flaming glory of my purpose.” That glory is coming to you, to abound in you and through you.
The Lord is reaching out to draw you in with His loving arms to say, “I want to move you to a point of advancement.” Don’t let where you are now determine your future. It’s never too late, you are never too young, nor are you ever too old to advance in God’s purpose. Hear Him calling you, turn aside, take your shoes off, and let God lead you forward at His pace in the advancement of His purpose and glory for you.
Rest in His peace,