TAKE OFF YOUR BOOTS Back to blog list
In Exodus 3, we read of a man named Moses going about his father in law’s business; he was working hard tending his sheep. One day, while going about his work, he comes across a burning bush. He goes over to look at it, hears God’s voice and takes off his sandals as instructed. The voice of instruction changes not only his life, but the future of a nation. This year, I want to encourage you, in the busyness of work, family, life and even your Christian ministry, to make space for God… to stop, take off your boots, to rest regularly in creation and so hopefully hear God’s voice and instruction, as we know that…
Unless the Lord builds a house, the work of the builders is wasted. Unless the Lord protects a city, guarding it with sentries will do no good. Psalm 127:1
As you go about your work, family and ministry life, let me encourage you to regularly stop in creation. Moses, in the middle of his work, was amazed at the sight of this burning bush, so much so that he choose to take a closer look.
There the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a blazing fire from the middle of a bush. Moses stared in amazement. Though the bush was engulfed in flames, it didn’t burn up. “This is amazing,” Moses said to himself. “Why isn’t that bush burning up? I must go see it.” Exodus 3:2-3
We should never be so busy that we simply gloss over the wonder of God’s creation.
We should never be so busy that we simply gloss over the wonder of God’s creation. After all, it was created for our enjoyment. This year, even with everything else that may be vying for your attention, let me encourage you to regularly get into creation. To stop, go for a walk along the beach, into the bush, even to the park down the road for 30 minutes and allow yourself to stop, refocus, give thanks and be in awe again of creation.
When the Lord saw Moses coming to take a closer look, God called to him from the middle of the bush, “Moses! Moses!” “Here I am!” Moses replied. “Do not come any closer,” the Lord warned. “Take off your sandals, for you are standing on holy ground. Exodus 3:4-5
During January our theme as an assembly was “rest”, and so with that we encouraged our people, including those who ministered, to wear their jandals to Sunday services. it was jandal January! But have you ever noticed how you cannot run in jandals? Jandals make you walk slowly. Moses chooses to take time out of his day, to stop and to take a closer look at this burning bush. As he draws closer to it, God sees him and instructs him to take off his sandals. I want to encourage you to not only make a habit of drawing closer to God in creation, but to take off your boots and walk more slowly, because where you stand as an ambassador for Christ about your Father’s business, is holy ground. So slow down, take off your boots, your shoes, whatever you may wear for your work and choose to intentionally draw closer to God and so walk slowly this year with Him.
Then the Lord told him, “I have certainly seen the oppression of my people in Egypt. I have heard their cries of distress because of their harsh slave drivers. Yes, I am aware of their suffering. So I have come down to rescue them from the power of the Egyptians and lead them out of Egypt into their own fertile and spacious land. It is a land flowing with milk and honey – the land where the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites now live. Exodus 3:7-8
When we choose to intentionally draw closer to God, to take the time to walk slowly with him, to stop and spend time with him in his creation, we create not only an opportunity but space for God to speak into our lives.
Come close to God, and God will come close to you. James 4:8
Moses was going about his daily work when he was stopped by the wonder of the burning bush, so much so that he choose to draw closer, and in drawing close was instructed to take off his sandals. When we take off our sandals, boots and shoes we feel every stone and the grass under our feet. We become vulnerable and open to not only walking slowly with God, but hearing his voice. He sees you in your busyness, your building, frustration and your work, He sees your family, your struggles with the children, the bills, the house. But he also sees your dreams and aspirations for the future. We read in Jeremiah 29:11 of God speaking again to the nation of Israel, saying to them and so also to us today:.
For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. Jeremiah 29:11
If God knows the plans he has for me, my family and my church, then surely it would be beneficial for me to stop, to get into creation, take off my boots and walk slowly with him. To ask him in the middle of my busyness, what he desires for me, my family, church, ministry and life. What does he think about the plans I have? And in this way I choose to put myself in a place to hear His voice and instruction.
So as you choose to take the time, to stop, be in awe again of creation, to walk slowly and take off your boots this year, please let me know how you get on, share a picture on our new MOFNZ instagram or Facebook page and let’s encourage one another to stop, to take our off our boots, to rest and walk closer with Jesus.