When the LORD saw that he turned aside to see, God called to him out of the bush, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.”
I am, at heart, a fairly driven person. My life is frequently lived out with “to do” lists written in my daily journal and on my computer or my cell phone. I have a regular routine and a rigid schedule. I like my days to go according to a routine that I set, schedule, and plan. I feel like I am at my best when I can accomplish my list of tasks for the day and get done what needs to get done.
The problem is I get interrupted. When I am in my study, the phone will ring, someone will drop by and want to chat, or my cell phone will play its loon notification note to tell me I have a text, an instant message, or an alert. Emergencies will arise. Oftentimes I will be engaged in something that I feel is terribly important and I will get a call to go and try to help someone that may or may not want or need my help.
That was the case recently. I was preparing for special services and had a rather tight deadline. I was working furiously to accomplish my “To Do” when the phone rang. I answered and found that a need was being presented to me. I left the office and spent a couple of hours with the person. When that time was over, I felt as though I had wasted my time. It was in the middle of my inner tantrum that God reminded me of a powerful lesson he had taught me a long time ago.
In Exodus 3, Moses is going about the duties he had as a shepherd. He was caring for his sheep and goats, leading them to water, protecting them, leading ot shelter and the best grass when something new and different caught his attention. Of course, you know what he saw was a bush burning, but not being burned up. Verse 4 of chapter three says that Moses turned aside to see this thing. In other words, Moses day was interrupted and there in his interruption, Moses had an encounter with God.
God reminded me that frequently God is encountered in the interruptions of our day and the most significant ministry often occurs on God’s time rather than ours. Interruptions become sacred spaces where the Holy Spirit can move, can speak, and can lead us into areas of God’s choosing. Interruptions are oftentimes the REAL opportunity for ministry.
Now, please understand, I still have to watch my own spirit and heart when I am interrupted. But when I stop to consider what God is doing, the margins where my agenda is intersected with God’s agenda become the most fruitful times in life.
I would encourage you, the next time you are interrupted and find yourself irritated because of the distraction, ask the question, “Where is God in this time? What is God trying to teach me? Or What does God want me to do here?”
You may just find your own “burning bush” experience. Anyway, that’s just my meanderings!