We have some pretty good kids. For the most part, they listen well...but there is one thing we need some help with: our kids are proficient interrupters. They don't hesitate to burst into any conversation with whatever 'urgent' thing is on their mind.
God reserves the right to interrupt, and that is exactly what he does in the life of Moses in Exodus 3. Here are some things we can learn from Moses' encounter with the Living God at the burning bush:
1] Moses was dealing with life-long disappointment [Exodus 3:1]. Keep in mind, Moses lived for 40 years as a prince of Egypt before running for his life to live 40 years working for his father-in-law as a shepherd. Moses had settled down, married, and had kids, but he had lost a lot. No longer a prince and orphaned from his Hebrew people, he faced a series of disappointments and saw his hopes and dreams for his people fade away. He wallowed in a sense of person failure for 40 years...until God interrupted.
2] The LORD called Moses by name [Exodus 3:2-4]. The burning bush caught his attention. How can the Holy Spirit be in a bush and not consume it? How can the Holy Spirit be in Mary's womb and not consumer her? How can the Holy Spirit be in the church and not consume us? Because God performs a miracle which allows Him to come close to us without destroying us. As Moses walked closer, what he heard next stopped him in his tracks. He heard his name. For the first time in 400 years, God spoke and interrupted the silence by calling Moses by name.
3] Moses met with God [Exodus 3:5-10]. He met a holy God who told him to take off his sandals. He met a compassionate God who had heard the cries of captive Israel. He met a providing God who wanted to lead the Hebrew people back to the Promised Land. He met an imminent God who had come very close. He met a personal God who knew Moses by name and called him to a special purpose.
4] Moses got hung up on his own self-doubt [Exodus 3:11-15]. Moses responds to what the LORD said with a "...but who am I?..." Remember, he had carried loss his whole life. He had no successes to speak of. He didn't even own his own flocks and worked for his father-in-law. Yikes! But notice God didn't answer Moses' questions with a list of Moses' qualifications. The LORD answered his question with the LORD's qualifications! Because I AM! This will take place because I AM...and your faith in me will be all the proof you will need.
While it seems like God was absent in Moses' life, the LORD was actually preparing Moses for this special purpose. For 40 years, Moses was trained in the ways of Egypt and the Pharaoh, and for 40 years Moses was trained in leading a herd through the desert. He knew how to talk to Pharaoh, how to find safe passage, how to deal with loneliness, and how to herd sheep that each want to go their own way. The final 40 years of his life, God led Moses into his calling! Moses had been prepared for this his entire life.
That's what God does!
Do we believe the LORD can take our loss, disappointment, history, highs & lows, failures & successes to prepare us for our calling? That's exactly what God did for Moses. Despite our loss and disappointment, God saves anyhow! Do we have the faith to believe God can use and redeem our disappointments to propel us into His mission and purpose?
That's what the interrupting God does.