“Signs of God’s Presence”

The Upper Room devotional reflection for Wednesday, July 27, 2022, comes to us from Kathryn Agnello of New Jersey.

1 Now Moses was tending the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian, and he led the flock to the far side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. 2 There the angel of the Lord appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that though the bush was on fire it did not burn up. 3 So Moses thought, "I will go over and see this strange sight-why the bush does not burn up." 4 When the Lord saw that he had gone over to look, God called to him from within the bush, "Moses! Moses!" And Moses said, "Here I am." 5 "Do not come any closer," God said. "Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground." 6 Then he said, "I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob." At this, Moses hid his face, because he was afraid to look at God. 7 The Lord said, "I have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard them crying out because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about their suffering. 8 So I have come down to rescue them from the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey-the home of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites. 9 And now the cry of the Israelites has reached me, and I have seen the way the Egyptians are oppressing them. 10 So now, go. I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring my people the Israelites out of Egypt." 11 But Moses said to God, "Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?" 12 And God said, "I will be with you. And this will be the sign to you that it is I who have sent you: When you have brought the people out of Egypt, you will worship God on this mountain."

Exodus 3:1-12 NIV

 

“Signs of God’s Presence”


During the last days of my grandpa’s life, my family and I took a break from the hospice center where he was staying and went for a walk. We went to a nature center where I noticed some mourning doves flying around us. I remember thinking, Maybe God sent those doves to remind us that God is with us and will continue to provide for us even as we mourn.


When we arrived back at the hospice center, I still felt anxious and sad, but I was also reassured that God was present. God appeared to Moses through a burning bush, and in a similar way, God appeared to me through the mourning doves and continues to do so today. Whenever I feel intimidated by what God calls me to do, I look for doves to come across my path, and often they do. Seeing them fills me with peace. I am reminded that God is with me and will provide what I need. God gives us physical reminders of God’s presence. If ever we feel distant from our Creator, all we have to do is look around to be reminded of God’s love for us.

 

Friends –

I don’t remember ever having doves or other creatures being present to me in ways that remind that God is with me. But, I certainly see God’s handiwork whenever I see a beautiful sunrise or sunset. Majestic views of mountains, lakes, prairies, or oceans speak loudly to me of God’s holy creation. At this moment in history, I think particularly of having seen that incredible Sequoyah Forest in Yosemite, and I wonder if the water from those sprinklers is like God’s tears saving the most ancient of God’s creation on Earth. I invite you to think about what things in God’s physical world help you to experience God’s presence in your life.

--Pastor bea

 
Prayer:

Ever-present God, thank you for reminding us of your love in physical ways. Give us eyes to see the signs and wonders you place in our paths. Amen.

--Kathryn Agnello


Prayer Focus:

Those in Need of Comfort


Thought for the Day:

I trust that God is always by my side.

 

Then John gave this testimony: “I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and remain on him” John 1:32 (NIV)