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“An angel of the Lord appeared to him in a flame of fire from the midst of a bush.  So he looked and behold, the bush was burning with fire, but the bush was not consumed.”  Exodus 3: 2

“Then Moses said to the Lord: ‘Oh my Lord, I am not eloquent, neither before nor since…..but I am slow of speech and slow of tongue”  Exodus 4:10

So many choices these days, so many voices.  We hear we are to do the will of God.  We also hear when something happens that must have been the will of God.  Yet sometimes the voices are divided.  “Do this as it is the will of God”, we hear from one side.  “No! this is what you should do to fulfill His will!”, we hear from another.  Boy if I could just see a burning bush!  It sure would be great if my shrubbery would talk to me.

I apologize for being a little flippant because the question is an important one; maybe the most important one.  How do I know what I’m supposed to do?  Where can I go to get Our Heavenly Father’s answer?  Why isn’t he showing me a sign?  First, I think that it is important to understand how much Our Heavenly Father knows about us; even more than we know ourselves.  We might say to ourselves (I know I have) but wow, if I could only have a burning bush message, I’d be all in.  I’d do exactly what I heard!  Come on God! let me have it!

Let’s take a look at a few actual human reactions to signs from God.  Moses and the burning bush for example.   It is impossible to portray the divine on a worldly stage but I Youtubed how Hollywood portrayed this interaction in the epic movie: The Ten Commandments.  Charlton Heston is a pretty amazing Moses, but the interaction does not seem to fit the emotion of the interaction between the Angel of the Lord and Moses. For Moses does first ask why me, and then he proceeds to dispute with God that He has chosen wisely.  Moses tries to make the points that the Israelite People will not know who sent him, won’t believe that he was sent, that Moses is not talented enough to be the right person.  The fact that this is all coming from the miracle of bush on fire but not consumed does not seem to have had an overwhelming impact on Moses.

How about the Israelite People themselves.  First they have seen the power of God in the plagues sent against Egypt, including the “Passover”.  They have been freed from Egypt leaving with loads of riches; gold and silver.  They have been spared from attack by the Egyptians by miraculously crossing through the Red Sea.  They are being led and protected, night and day, by God Himself, in the guise of a pillar of fire at night and pillar of smoke during the day.  How can it be that they would miss the will of God in these signs.  Yet time after time, they miss the Will of God and complain to Moses:  “You led us here to die of thirst!  You led us here to starve to death! Would that we have stayed in Egypt.  Hey, I’ve got a good idea, let us make a golden calf to bow down and worship!”  Doesn’t appear that God’s signs had an overwhelming impact here either.  There are many other times miraculous signs were not initially heeded; a talking donkey a dry or dew soaked fleece.  And lest we forget, the miracle after miracle performed by Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ that were completely dismissed.

Thus it is vital that we be honest with ourselves.  If God sent us a miraculous sign today.  If we were confronted with an indisputable direction to be taken.  And, if that direction was not one we thought we could succeed at, or if it was not a direction that we had planned to go; would we drop to our knees praising God and declaring that yes we will leave and do immediately? Or, would we question God’s sign, question God Himself and the wisdom of the course He has laid out for us?

Here’s one of the miraculous things to me in all of this; God’s Mercy and Patience.  Here is the Creator, giving a task to His created. And the created is replying:  Creator, I’m not so sure about this, not just once but several times.  Remembering the Power of the Creator in all things, one might expect He would judge His creation unworthy, bring destruction down and find another.  What did He do for Moses; gave him Aaron to accompany him.  What about the people of Israel when they complained about starving; sent manna and quail.  When the people denied Jesus and His miracles, Christ died for them and us.

So if a bush is not going to do it for us; what will?  As it was in the beginning and ever shall be; God will.  God has given us the reference material to His Will.  He has given us His Word to read and study that clearly outlines what He wants.  And He didn’t stop there; for if a picture is worth a thousand words, then an action, an example must be worth a hundred times that.  So God gave us the deeds of Himself in loving action with us and then when we needed The Perfect Example, Our Heavenly Father sent Jesus Christ to show us the way.  And He is not done giving.  For to provide us with insight we are incapable of through worldly logic or discernment, God has given us the Holy Spirit to open our eyes and touch our souls with the Wisdom and Love of God.

A burning bush?  A pillar of fire?  What are those examples compared to the Resurrected Christ!?  In Him we truly have all that we need.

Our Most Gracious Heavenly Father, ever since the Garden of Eden, we have been trying to figure things out through our own devices.  You have sent us signs, prophets and even Your Only Son Jesus Christ.  Yet we confess, we struggle against those signs trying to interject our own.  Forgive us Most Merciful Father we pray.  Pour out Your Heavenly Strength that we might put aside all worldly logic and thought and humble ourselves and our will to the service of Your Will.  Through the Holy Spirit bring us to an understanding and willingness to follow what You would have us do.  That in following Your Will, we would bring glory, honor and praise to Your Most Holy Name.  We pray in the name of Jesus Christ.  Amen


“The Kingdom of God does not come with an observation, nor will they say, See Here! or See There!  For indeed, the Kingdom of God is within you.”  Luke 17: 20-21

There is a song that starts out “Signs, Signs everywhere a sign….” (I apologize for those who might know the song and now it is stuck in your head).  We also often hear that wise old phrase:  “Seeing is believing”.  (Although again, with the things they can do with computers these days, that saying is now often put to the test).  In this case, the Pharisees are looking for a sign.  They have asked Jesus, when is the kingdom of God going to come?

It is not just a question that happens in the bible.  I have taught in large governmental organizations and fortune 100 companies.  Many times the classes have been about organizational change initiatives.  In many cases, these changes are things that the rank and file of the organization actually want to see happen; things like, more input into decisions, improved and more open communications, greater sharing of leadership and responsibility.  However, in virtually all cases, I have some and in some cases the majority who says; I’ll believe the changes are happening when I see them actually happen.  In most cases, what they mean and what they will say is, I will not change until I see a change on the part of other people, especially management.  What they don’t understand is the converse of their statement and the impact.  For what they are also saying is:  I have no part in making anything different until I see it from above.  They often do not see the power and the promise that comes from embracing the new idea, regardless of whether others embrace it or not.

It might have been interesting if Jesus had asked them; “Why do you ask?”  “What do you plan to do when the Kingdom comes that you are not doing right now?”  Alas, their answers would not have mattered as they were not going to believe what Jesus said to them, no matter what.  They needed to learn the lesson that the prophet Samuel learned when he entered into Jesse’s tent to anoint the next king of Israel.  He saw sons who were powerful and saw sons who were strikingly handsome and thought to himself:  “Surely this one is the next king”.  But God answered to him:  “The Lord does not see as a man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.  Samuel would have overlooked King David.

If we stop for a moment to truly think about it; that the Kingdom of God would be inside us, makes perfect sense.  We are spiritual beings.  We have a soul.  Yet we are also physical beings living in a physical world.  Though, our ability to feel, to care, to love comes, not from without, but from within.  Thus, that God being of Spirit, would desire to touch and interact with where our spirit resides, is logical.  That Jesus Christ came and lived among us, demonstrates the ability for the Spirit to also reside in the flesh.  Albeit we will never have the perfect combination of Spirit and flesh, that He did.

Jesus Christ did the miracles that He did, taught the Truth that He Taught, Lived the perfect Life that He Lived, because of what was inside.  I often ponder, what it would be like, if I/we really tapped into the Spirit within me/us; really stepped forth with the understanding that we have all the resources of His Kingdom, within us.  May it be that in trying to find the sign I seek, I do not look out there, but I look in here, in me.  I did not nor ever will earn His Kingdom which resides in me.  It is a gift made possible through the Life, Death, and Resurrection of Jesus Christ my Savior.

Our Most Gracious and Heavenly Father, we search the starry universe, the depth of the seas and all over this earth for a sign from You.  Yet You testify through Your Son Jesus Christ, that Your Kingdom resides within us.  Give us the strength to search and the wisdom to find Your Kingdom within us.  Show us through the tools of Your Word and Your Love the vision of what we should be like as Your Kingdom People.  And plant within our hearts the urging to become Your Kingdom People.  In the name of Jesus Christ we pray.




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