Random and not so random musings from a 5th generation NE Missourian who became a 1st generation Episcopalian. Let the good times roll!

Exodus 3:1-6

Moses was keeping the flock of his father-in-law Jethro, the priest of Midian; he led his flock beyond the wilderness, and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. There the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a flame of fire out of a bush; he looked, and the bush was blazing, yet it was not consumed. Then Moses said, “I must turn aside and look at this great sight, and see why the bush is not burned up.” When the Lord saw that he had turned aside to see, God called to him out of the bush, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” Then he said, “Come no closer! Remove the sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.” He said further, “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.

Ok, I admit. I had to show off my burning bush in my backyard to everyone because it's so spectacular. Call it "pride of ownership."

But let's look at the story in Exodus of the burning bush for a minute.

What always strikes me about this story is Moses was merely out tending his father-in-law's flock (presumably sheep, since the word "flock" is used; but I guess theoretically it could include goats) and minding his own business, and WHOA! There's the burning bush. There's a HUGE visitation from God, and a conversation.

But here's the catch. God catches Moses when he has no witnesses, except a bunch of critters who go, "Baaaaa." (or "Neeeeee," in the case of any potential goats.)

This story is a reminder of how when God is really serious about talking to us, it is very likely in the context of our thinking we are alone.

I had a very sobering thought as I was sitting out by my chiminea fire recently. Don't get me wrong. I love e-mail and social networking and my cell phone. But I also regularly "unplug" myself and have little "retreats" from it. My thought was this: Are we raising an entire generation who has no clue what "alone time" is? Will we lose our ability to "feel" North, South, East, and West with no help from a GPS? Will we morph to a place where being alone for a spell is no longer considered normal, but a pathological state?

How are people going to "be still and know that I am God," when they fear being alone even for a short period of time?

I admit--this is one of those times I am grateful I was an only child.

As an only, I could not always count on having playmates. I learned to spend productive time alone in the woods, alone on my bike, alone on the porch with my own thoughts. It has only been in recent years I have rediscovered those simple pleasures. My job has the potential to create busy-ness constantly if I allow it. I have started to learn in those times where I can, to simply turn everything off and let it all rest.

But the question remains--how do we teach the gift of "alone time?" I confess I am a little stumped as to a concrete answer for it.


I tried to devise a program (while living in the desert) for kids to sit and write or draw in the desert wilderness after experiencing some of those pesky ol' desert stories in our scripture.... no way.... no way was that going to happen....



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Kirksville, Missouri, United States
I'm a longtime area resident of that quirky and wonderful place called Kirksville, MO and am wondering what God has hiding round the next corner in my life.

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