How Turning Aside Can Turn Things Around

January 27, 2012

in Everyday Lessons,Everyday Words

I was there with little Rebekah, up in her room.  Some tiny unseen virus had seen its way into her little body and turned her world upside down.  I’d changed at least a diaper an hour for at least 30 hours straight.  And it seemed that she’d done nothing but cry and whine and complain—she was in pain.

And at the end of the weekend, when the walls felt like they were closing in on me, my big girl Carolyn came in the room with her Doodle-Pro and showed me her new creation.  ‘Look, mommy.  It’s the burning bush.’ I fastened the diaper and turned aside to see and sure enough, she’d drawn a bush blazing with fire.

I told her it was beautiful and hugged her tight and asked if she knew how important the burning bush was to me?  She knows I ‘work’ here at this computer, but I’ve never told her that all these words are about searching for what she’d found there– Burning Bushes.

I’d never noticed it before, how many times Moses returned to the place where he saw that bush burn.  It’s Mount Horeb-the mountain of God.  And God keeps bringing Moses back to that mountain.

  • It was at Horeb that Israel complained about lack of water and Moses was commanded to strike the rock
  • It was on Horeb where Moses received the ten commandments
  • It was at Horeb that Israel made the golden calf and Moses called for repentance and begged for God’s mercy
  • It was at Horeb that God challenged Israel to make their way into the Promised Land
  • It was from Horeb that spies were sent out to survey the land God had given Israel

The place where God had first revealed Himself as the ‘I AM’ would be the place where Moses would face his greatest challenges.  The place of calling would become the place of testing. And no matter how difficult the journey became, the challenge for Moses would always be the same–to see.

‘And Moses said, ‘I will turn aside to see this great sight, why the bush is not burned.’  When the Lord saw that he turned aside to see, God called to him out of the bush, ‘Moses, Moses!‘  Exodus 3: 3-4

It’s been here, surrounded by these four walls that God has let the bush burn.  But it’s only when I turn aside to see, only when I take the time to stop and look that I hear God call out-‘Nicole, Nicole!’

These days, the diaper and Doodle Pro days can be holy days. I’m not leading a million Israelites out of the desert, but sometimes the never ending needs and complaining and rebellion of my own little flock is nothing short of exhausting.  But all of this stained carpet, all these mud tracked rugs, all the crumb covered floors-all of it can be holy ground.

All of it is holy if only I will turn aside and see.


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