Our Burning Bush
by Joanne Ellison

Today I want to share with you the day’s entry for my daily devotional, Drawing Near to God. As a reminder, you can follow along with the devotional on our website or via our mobile app. It’s great to do the devotional with friends and family too – I know I’ve enjoyed doing the devotional alongside my family members.

Today’s entry focuses on the story of Moses and the burning bush – how God showed up in an extraordinary way during an ordinary task. What burning bush experiences have you had in your life? I’d love to hear in the comments.


Now Moses was tending the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian, and he led the flock to the far side of the desert and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. There the angel of the Lord appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that though the bush was on fire it did not burn up. So Moses thought, “ I will go over and see this strange sight—why the bush does not burn up.

God Appears to Moses in Burning Bush. Painting from Saint Isaac’s Cathedral, Saint Petersburg

Exodus 3:1-3

Moses was in the middle of doing what he always did—tending the sheep. An ordinary, everyday task was suddenly interrupted by the extraordinary! He sees that the bush was on fire, but it was not burning up. When he went over to the bush to see what it was, the Lord called out to him. God told Moses not to get too close. Was He concerned that Moses might be burned? No, He told Moses that this was a holy place, holy ground, and that he must remove his sandals. I have often wondered what the sandals represent. Perhaps the sandals represent all the places where our feet have tread—all the places where our shoes have gotten dirty and the filth of the world has soiled our lives. In order to stand in front of a holy God, they have to be removed. Or perhaps the sandals represent our humanity—our sin that cannot stand before a holy God. We do not know for certain, but we do know that Moses obeyed and hid his face because He knew that this was a sacred place. Moses was then commissioned by God to lead the Israelites out of Egypt and He promised that he would go with him.

What burning bush experiences have you had? Times when you knew that you were facing a holy God and you trembled in fear? God’s Presence is not to be taken lightly; He is a holy God who is seeking to make us holy. What are the sandals in your life that God is asking you to remove that keep you from holiness? What is the burning bush that you face knowing that God is summoning you to follow His call? Just as He told Moses, God promises to go with you: And God said, “I will be with you.” (v.12) Are you willing to take off your sandals and follow?

Heavenly Father,
I have seen You in the burning bush experiences of my life but have been too afraid to respond and unwilling to count the cost, unwilling to remove my sandals. Forgive me, Lord, for desiring to hold on to the things that keep me from responding to Your call. I choose today to respond to Your call.
In Jesus’ name, Amen



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