Before God Speaks to Moses
Moses grew up in a palace in Egypt. Yet he didn’t couldn’t ignore the cry of his people. At age forty he sees an Egyptian cruelly punishing an Israelite and takes things in his own hands. The Egyptian doesn’t live to see another day (Exodus 2:11-12).
Fearing the consequences of his actions, Moses flees to the desert, and stays… for forty more years.
The burning bush is a wonder story in the Old Testament. It sets in motion the miracle-filled journey of Moses going back to Egypt and leading the Israelites out of slavery.
Moses Could Have Missed God Speaking
Sure, we know how God had to talk Moses into going. Moses didn’t think would believe God sent him. Moses didn’t think he was good enough at speaking. But, Moses couldn’t have missed the whole thing if he hadn’t been curious.
The Bible says that Moses saw the bush on fire and thought it strange. It was only when he went to check it out that God spoke to him. “When the Lord saw that he had gone over to look, God called to him from within the bush, ‘Moses! Moses!'” (Exodus 3:2-4)
I think God oftentimes is waiting for us to see if we are interested before speaking. Are we pulling away from our daily activities enough to listen?
God is not forcing you to listen to Him; that is what the enemy does. God is waiting for His people to ask. — Matt Peterson
Times We Have Stopped Speaking
Have you ever been with your spouse and had something important to share, when you can tell they are not listening to you? They may be staring at their phone, or watching TV, or falling asleep. This never happens to me, as my wife is a great listener, but she says it has happened to her.
When this happens, we shut down. We don’t want to open ourselves up if the other person isn’t listening.
I don’t think God has these same personal issues, but there is something to Him wanting to see some interest on our part.
How Do We Get God to Talk?
The Canaanite woman comes to Jesus for healing for her daughter. Jesus gives her a seemingly rude response of not taking bread from children to give to dogs. The woman continues to engage Jesus and finds her miracle (Matthew 15:21-28).
The rich young ruler comes to Jesus wanting to find what he must do to be saved, and Jesus tells him that he must sell all he has. The man gets discouraged and leaves Jesus (Matthew 19:21-22). The disciples were also astonished by this instruction, but they stuck around to ask Jesus about it. In doing so, they found Jesus was willing to talk more about it (Matthew 19:25-30).
God wants us to pursue Him to seek His wisdom, His insight, and His voice. There are many times God did come in and made His communication evident, yet I don’t think we are called to assume that He will interrupt us to speak. We are to make ourselves ready to hear His voice.
- How do you make time to listen for what God may want to speak to you?
Books to Read on This Subject
- Discerning the Voice of God by Priscilla Shirer
- Whisper: How to Hear the Voice of God by Mark Batterson
- The Prophetic Voice of God: Learning to Recognize the Language of the Holy Spirit by Lana Vawser