I think of the call of Moses often. In fact I refer to it quite regularly. When I am in a major discernment or I want to be sure of God’s presence, I often wish that God would give me an obvious sign…I want a burning bush! Yet why should I think a burning bush would convince me of anything, when I consider Moses’ reaction?
Moses does appear sure of God. In fact he objects to God’s call offering quite a list of reasons and excuses in rapid succession. Moses’ first question is “who am I that I should go to the Pharaoh” (Gen 3:11). Next Moses asks “if they ask your name what should I tell them” (Gen 3:13). After that Moses wants to know what he should do if no one believes him (Gen 4:1) and then Moses argues that he is not a good speaker (Gen 4:10). Finally, Moses flat out says “send someone else” (Gen 4:13).
The objections Moses raises may come from a place of fear; a fear that comes from not really knowing or trusting God to deal so intimately with people. Moses’ fear and objections are the same fear and objections I raise every time I am faced with a new challenge, a new situation…a new call from God. I raise the same questions as did Moses: Who am I to do this? What shall I say and do? What if no one likes me or listens to me? I would be no good at this. Can’t you find someone else?
Moses’ objections (and mine) are all met by God’s reassurance and great problem-solving skills. Moses, like me, learns that you can never weary God, out-smart God, or bring up any problem that is insurmountable for God. It takes a lot to trust that God has thought of all the “what ifs” and has predicted and planned for any troubles that may arise when the commissioning is accepted.
In the end, it comes down to believing that God is bigger and better than our fears and objections and even our imaginations. I know my God, love my God, and trust my God, but yet in moments of anxiety and uncertainty I long for more assurance…I want a burning bush.
Sister Lisa Maurer
Sister Lisa Maurer was born and raised in Sleep Eye, Minnesota. Before entering the Monastery in 2007, she taught and coached in Catholic Schools within the New Ulm Diocese. Sister Lisa Made her Perpetual Monastic Profession in July ll, 2012. Her first ministry as a Benedictine Sister was working at the parishes of St. Lawrence and St. Joseph in Duluth. Currently she is Director of Mission Integration for the Benedictine Health System.