“Do not come any closer,” God said. “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground.” Exodus 3:5
In my downline class we just went through the book of Exodus, and as I was reading it again I came across something that I just cannot let go of. I am actually only in chapter three which is my favorite story all because one man had to take off his shoes. I know, I know there is more in there than that. It also happens to be my favorite because God is raising up a deliverer here to rescue His people out of the bondage of slavery, and take them to the land that was promised long ago. Moses, who is hanging out in the wilderness, because he ran after he killed that Egyptian dude for hurting one of his own has now come face to face with a bush on fire except it is not burning up. (And the bush probably does not have a face I would not think anyway.) This is a moment where I would have loved to have been there. Mainly because it would have been the only time in my life where not wearing shoes was acceptable. No one needs shoes just sayin! Not because the bush was on fire and being weird that would freak me out. This is why I am not Moses, and well also because I am not a man.
The story goes on to say that God had seen their affliction and had heard their cry for help out of the situation. And He remembered His promise. I love that part! He never forgets His promises, my friend, and because of that He will come to the rescue every time. We see in Exodus 3:11 Moses automatically questioned this he says, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh, and that I should bring Israel out of Egypt? Have you met me?” (I added that one for you) And God said back to him one of the best things ever, “I will be with you”. But then Moses says “If they ask of the name who sent me what do I tell them?” And God replies, “I AM WHO I AM. Tell them I AM sent me to you.” If you have read Exodus or colored a cool coloring page when you were younger about Moses and Egypt then you know God wins in this. He gets His people out, His glory is shown, and freedom is set for the captives even if their journey after is full of disobedience and a bunch of crazy. God still won. He still rescued. He still dwelled among His people.
God said to Moses, “I am who I am. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I am has sent me to you.’” Exodus 3:14
In my life right now, and the reason why I stopped at this chapter was simply because of who God says He is. And I cannot help but think that when I ask God who He is in my struggles He replies the way He did with Moses. And even though He was probably not saying any of this to him, I can hear Him saying it to me. If you listen, I bet you can even hear it for you as well.
Sara, I am.
I AM here.
I AM love.
I AM peace.
I AM for you.
I AM with you.
I AM victorious.
I AM holding on to you.
I AM worthy of all praise.
I AM the beginning and the end – the same yesterday, today, and forever.
I AM Yahweh, Elohim, El Roi, El Shaddai, Jehovah Jireh, Jehovah Rapha, Jehovah Shalom
Peace just swept over me as I spoke those out loud. Sometimes I seem to forget who I bring to my battles, and who goes ahead of me. What great comfort it is to know that His name is greater than any other name. God told Moses that day in Exodus 3:15, “This is my name forever”. He is with us. Forever. I wonder if Moses put his shoes back on after that whole experience. I know what I am about to say, and I know what you are going to think so just pretend that I like shoes when I say this. I do not know if I would have put mine back on. I wonder if Moses walked away with a little bit more confidence in who his God was than in who he was. I wonder when he stood before Pharaoh was he shaking in his boots (why? Why do we shake in boots?) or was he full of peace. Maybe his perspective changed a little bit. I know I see it through out that the leader he became was a really great one, but here in this moment standing in the presence of God did he realize where his strength came from? This day marks a very important day in the life of Moses, and it was only just the beginning. What do you have to say to your struggle today, and who is God to you? I hope that you can walk away from this or switch over to a different page on the interwebs knowing who He is, but I pray that if you cannot you will find all the I AM’s in your life today. Take off your shoes (I just thought I would try this) today. Ok, or don’t. Either way, I’m going to.