by Martin Oldfield
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‘And Moses said, “Here I am”’ (Exodus 3:4).
Today’s reading highlights a typical encounter with the God of Creation. There is often a mountain involved and nearly always fire. And fear and trembling. Oh, and it was often the lowliest of people going up the mountain. Moses was a shepherd (a lowly job). He went up Mt Horeb, and there was a burning bush (the fire bit). He hid his face (the fear bit). God called ‘Moses, Moses’, and Moses’ simple reply of ‘Here I am’ indicated his willingness to listen to God. If you read a little further, you will discover that he wasn’t entirely enamoured with what God then told him to do, but that is a whole other story.
And we can see ourselves in this story. We are privileged to live in the time after the resurrection. We don’t have to go up a mountain and look for a fire to find God and hear his voice. We don’t have to hide our face in fear because we have Abba Father – our Heavenly Dad – who has always longed for a relationship with us, his children. In the Bible, we have his word at our fingertips. We can go there and hear his voice at any time. We can find out what he is asking us to do. God talks to us from his word – no fire needed today! And we will often say ‘Here I am’ … until we discover what it is that he is asking of us. It is very easy to say ‘Here I am’, but a whole lot harder to say ‘and now I will do what you ask of me’.
It is even harder to actually go and do what God has asked us to do. It takes more than going to church on Sunday and living a ‘good life’ (judged against what standard?!) to be called a Christian. It takes a lot more than simply saying ‘Here I am’ to be called a follower and disciple of Jesus. God doesn’t need high powered, successful people to do his work – all he needs is any person prepared to say ‘Here I am’ and mean it. God longs for you to be a person who says ‘Here I am’ and then he loves to help you mean it.
Dear Dad, here I am! My spirit is willing, but sometimes my flesh is weak. Please grant me the strength to carry out the work you created me to do with a joyful heart and a willing spirit. Amen.