August 30 — Here I am, Lord: Family faith formation at home


Invite various persons to bring a designated item and use this liturgy to begin your time of learning together. 

One:    Come, let us gather around and see how the Spirit will nurture our faith today.

All:      Who is with us?
One:    Christ, the light of the world.
(Place a candle on a table in your gathering place and light it.)

All:      Who is with us?
One:   The Love of God, who came to meet us in the world.
(Place a cross on a table in your gathering place.)

All:      Who is with us?
One:    The Wisdom of God, who speaks through the Scriptures.
(Place an open Bible on a table in your gathering place.)

All:      Who is with us?
One:    The Grace of God, who proclaims we are children of God.
(Place a symbol of baptism – a bowl of water, a seashell – on a table in your gathering space.)

All:      Who is with us?
One:    Our risen Lord, who meets us at the table.
(Place a symbol of communion – a plate and cup, a loaf of bread, grapes – on a table in your gathering space.)

One:    We are here, Holy Spirit, ready for your leading.

God sightings and prayer offerings 

Invite each person to share where they saw or experienced God this week. Invite each person to share something — a person, community, experience, event, etc. – for which they want to offer prayer.

Good and gracious God, we thank you for all the ways you were and are present in our lives and in the world. [Invite each person to say aloud the sighting they named earlier.] We bring our prayers to you, prayers for… [invite each person to say aloud the prayer need they named earlier]. In Christ’s name we pray, Amen.

Connecting with Scripture: Exodus 3:1-15

Read the Scripture aloud the first time using the New Revised Standard Version or the Common English Bible.

As with last week, there are many aspects to this story. As you listen to the Scripture a second time, pay attention to the part of the story that speaks to you or lingers in your mind.

Connecting through story

Listen to the familiar hymn, “Here I Am, Lord,” and feel free to sing along.

  • What images did you see in your mind’s eye as you listened to the hymn?
  • What were you thinking or feeling as you heard it?
  • Who is God according to the hymn and what are the actions of God?
  • Who are we in the hymn and what are we called to do?


Connecting with our lives

Engage in dialogue:

  • What is the nature and character of God we see in this story?
  • Why, and how, does God act in this story?
  • Where did Moses hear God calling?
  • What did God want Moses to do?
  • How did Moses respond?
  • What was God’s response when Moses was uncertain?
  • Why do you think the name God gave was “I AM who I AM”?
  • Why was God calling and sending Moses?
  • Why does God continue to call people to join in God’s ongoing work of love and justice?
  • When, and how, have you heard calling in your life?
  • What is it that God wants you to do?
  • What gets in your way? What are the challenges and the fears that may get in your way?
  • What do you think God’s response is to your hesitation?
Click on this image for a version you can print and color.

Teaching points that can be incorporated into your discussion:

  • The Hebrew words used for God’s name can mean, “I AM WHO I AM,” “I AM WHAT I AM” or “I WILL BE who I WILL BE.” Each speaks to the eternity and completeness of God.
  • Note that Moses does not readily say “yes,” and in fact gives God a number of excuses. God counters each excuse by giving Moses everything he will need to do what God wants him to do.
  • God speaks to us in a variety of ways and forms. While most of us do not hear God speak audibly like Moses did, we can discern what God wants us to do by listening deeply in Scripture, prayer and through the voices of other trusted and faithful people.
  • It is important to remember that God only calls us endeavors that are life-giving, loving and liberating — those things that are consistent with who God is and the commandment to love one another.
  • In Scripture, “Here I am, Lord,” is a common way of responding when God directly calls upon a person — among them Abraham, Jacob, Moses, Samuel, Isaiah and Ananias.
  • Sometimes the response, “Here I am,” is spoken with actions rather than words — Shiphrah and Puah, Rahab, Deborah, Esther, Mary, Elizabeth, Mary Magdalene and the women at the tomb.
  • No matter if it is with words or actions, the good and right response when God calls upon us is, “Here I am.”
  • In Scripture, God doesn’t just call heroes and sheroes; God continues to call each of us to big and small tasks.
  • God will always give us what we need to do what God wants us to do.

Frederick Buechner defines a “call” or a “vocation” as “where our deep gladness and the world’s deep need meet.” Spend some time as a family thinking about the places the world is in need. Then think about those things that bring you joy. How can your joy and the world’s needs meet for the glory of God?


Close your time together by praying for one another, your neighbor, community and the world.

REBECCA DAVIS is the associate professor of Christian education at Union Presbyterian Seminary in Charlotte, North Carolina. A teaching elder and certified educator, she served congregations for over 20 years before moving into academic teaching. In addition to teaching and mentoring students, her passion is child advocacy and ministry.