Lent 1: at the far side of the wilderness

Then you will call and the Lord will answer. You will cry for help and God will say, "I'm here." Isaiah 58:9

Moses led the flock he was tending to the far side of the wilderness
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 thought, 'I will go over and see this strange sight--why the bush does not burn up.'  
When the Lord saw that Moses had gone over to look,
God called to him from within the bush, 'Moses! Moses!'  
And Moses said, 'Here I am.'    Exodus 3:1-4

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Where does Moses encounter God?  On the far side of the wilderness--that out of the way, untamed place where Moses slows down & tends his flock in quiet.  It's the ideal place for God to capture his attention.  Alone with his sheep, Moses can't help but see the steadily burning bush. He draws closer until God calls him by name: "Moses! Moses!" In this intimate meeting, God touches Moses to the depths of his heart.
During this time of Lent, I'm invited to travel to the far side of the wilderness, a place where nothing much is happening. In those moments away from the everyday chatter, manifestations of God's strange blazing beauty wait for me.  There God calls me by my name and hopes for my response, "Here I am."

Your wilderness can be a graced place.  Be still and let the things of God touch your heart.  Wait for God to whisper your name, to light a flame in your spirit, to speak of how beloved you are.

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