April 10, 2021

Little, Extraordinary Things

Exodus 3:1-12

Moses thought, “I will go over and see this strange sight—why the bush does not burn up.”

—  Exodus 3:3

It’s not always the big things in our lives that make the most difference. Often it’s the little things, such as everyday events and encounters, that shape us deeply and really change our lives. For example, I can think of brief, unplanned conversations with people—some of whom were not even close to me—that made me reflect for a long time about my perspectives and actions.

We know that in some ways Moses’ encounter with God at the burning bush was pivotal. But if we take a moment to look at the details, we can appreciate that at first it seemed a rather random occurrence in Moses’ everyday life of herding flocks. It wasn’t a high profile encounter with the king of Egypt, or an invasion by a foreign army, or even the sight of a massive cedar. It was simply a small bush burning in the desert, and yet it caught Moses’ attention because the fire in the bush did not go out.

This became a tree-of-life moment for Moses, because God met with him there and called him to lead his people, the Israelites, out of slavery in Egypt. So it wasn’t merely the fire in the bush that made this experience spectacular; it was being in the presence of God and hearing God’s call and his promise to be with Moses so that he could do this life-changing thing.

While it is completely up to God to reveal his power and presence to people, it is up to us to pay attention.

Lord, we long to know you, and we want to know your presence in our lives. Help us to be attentive when you reveal yourself to us, and to trust you to guide us. In Jesus, Amen.

About the author — Julia Prins Vanderveen

Julia Prins Vanderveen works and lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, with her husband, Trevor, and their three sons. Julia has served as a copastor with Trevor at a church in Vancouver. She is a campus pastor and a humanities teacher at the Vancouver Christian School.

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