Moses Encounters God in the Burning Bush

An Encounters of the Fourth Kind Video

By Fr. Ron Will, CPPS

Welcome to this fourth episode in a series entitled “Encounters of the Fourth Kind.”

I am Fr. Ron Will, a Missionary of the Precious Blood serving at Precious Blood Renewal Center in Liberty, Missouri.

Just to refresh your memory:

  • An encounter of the first kind is a sighting of a disk-like object in the distance.
  • An encounter of the second kind is similar but much closer than the first kind.
  • An encounter of the third kind is the sighting of non-human beings.
  • An encounter of the fourth kind is the actual encounter of human beings and non-human beings.

This series invites you to go deeper into your relationship with God, to plunge into that deeper relationship. It is an invitation to enter the divine embrace.

In today’s episode we will join Moses in the wilderness where he encounters the invisible God through his experience of a burning bush, but the bush is not consumed.

I will begin by reading from Exodus chapter 3 from The Message translation of the Bible. I invite you to close your eyes for a few minutes, use your active imagination and put yourself in the wilderness as one of Moses’ assistant shepherds.

I invite you to close your eyes and get comfortable. Relax your entire body. Breathe in deeply through your mouth … hold it … breathe out through your nose slowly and completely. Breathe in deeply again … hold it … breathe out slowly and completely. Again, breathe in deeply … hold it … breathe out slowly and completely. Let all the tension drain from your shoulders … relax your neck, … your facial muscles, … and even your eyelids … .Just relax …

Breathe in deeply … hold it … breathe out slowly and completely. (pause)

Now see yourself in your mind’s eye with a flock of sheep in the wilderness. Moses is walking ahead, leading the flock. You know him well. You’ve worked with him for years. You are walking along on one side of the flock keeping them headed in the right direction.

Suddenly Moses stops, points his finger in one direction, and says “Do you see that? What’s going on here?”

You also see the burning bush, and you follow Moses at a distance, as he slowly moves closer to the burning bush out of curiosity. What are you feeling right now? (pause)

You can overhear the conversation going on between Moses and an unseen voice coming from the bush.

What are you feeling right now? (pause)

The voice from the bush expresses genuine concern and compassion for the Israelite people who are enslaved in Egypt. What does the unseen voice sound like to you? (pause)

What kind of sentiments toward the Israelites begin to arise in you? (pause)

What kind of sentiments toward the unseen voice begin to arise in you? (pause)

As you listen to Moses express doubts about his ability to speak to Pharaoh, what do you see in Moses’ face, in the tone of his voice?

What are your sentiments about Moses? (pause)

When the voice of God says “I will be with you” what are you feeling? (long pause)

Do you feel attracted to accompany Moses back to Egypt, or to just stay here in Midian with the sheep?

You have just had an encounter of the fourth kind. Continue to sit in silence for a couple minutes and continue to experience that encounter. Savor it.

Then join me again next month, for another Close Encounter of the Fourth Kind.

May God bless you.

All of the videos in this series can be found here: Encounters of the Fourth Kind.

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[Fr. Ron Will, a Precious Blood priest and spiritual director, is a graduate of Catholic Theological Union and Creighton University’s School of Christian Spirituality. He has a special interest in helping form intentional disciples of Jesus, encouraging others to go spiritually deep-sea diving to explore a deeper relationship with God, and walking with people as they dive into the ocean of God’s mystery actually experiencing God rather than simply dipping one’s toe into the water.]

Photo 231438780 / Moses Burning Bush © Nonneljohnvilbar |

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