The Moses Manuscripts

Two poems and an exhortation for a very dear friend who knows who (s)he is.

Part I – A Poem

Of Farmers and Ceiling Fans

Five white blades cut
through the atmosphere,
defying the air to be stagnant.
Two wheels turn in the dirt,
keeping rhythm with steel
blades that break the land
for planting and ultimately
for production.
Around and around,
the farmer goes –
through the garden,
through the seasons,
through the years.
Tilling, planting, harvesting.
If one lacked perspective,
one might mistake the farmer
for a ceiling fan.

Part II – A Poem


My father is tall.

Tall takes up space.
Tall prays,
and is emotional,
and intelligent.

Tall is encouraging.
Tall is thoughtful,
and pensive,
and creative.

Tall creates the shadow I stand in
when the sun is too hot.
Tall is my refuge
when the wind is too strong.

Tall breaks . . .
but because it is strong,
it is not destroyed.
Tall, like love, endures.

And when a storm came
to scorch me
and erode me,
I realized that I am tall, too.

Part III – An Exhortation

Okay, Moses.

“Okay, Moses.”

Two words I’d forgotten I’d said.
Two words worthy of repetition.

Okay, Moses. Acknowledge the flame. Remove your sandals, and heed the call. Take your staff and your stammer. Take your wealth of knowledge and your ignorance, your faith and your doubt . . . take everything you’ve been equipped with, and go.

Go back to your people, Moses. Go to the enslaved. To the captives. To the people who feel that they’ve been given too much. To the people who feel you are asking too much.

Go to Pharaoh, Moses. Bring grief and grievances to light. Stand your ground. Do not be afraid. Perform the tasks you’ve been anointed to perform.

Submit to the Lord’s authority, Moses. He gave you power over oppression and evil. Your authority is greater than Pharaoh’s, because it was given by One who is greater than Pharaoh. Obey when the Creator of gravity tells you to carve a path through the sea.

Be bold and obedient and humble, Moses. Follow the pillars of cloud and fire into the wilderness. Remind God’s captive people of the freedom into which they have been called.

Walk on the narrow road between the water walls, Moses. Submit to the Lord; lead the people. Speak truth to them. Advocate and intercede for them. Share the structure, guidelines, and commands the Lord wrote down for his people, and for you. Love God’s people, for they are your people, too.

“Thus the Lord used to speak to Moses face to face, as a man speaks to his friend.” – Exodus 33:11a (ESV)

“Now the man Moses was very meek, more than all people who were on the face of the earth.” – Numbers 12:3 (ESV)

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