Tag Archives: leadership

God and Moses Have Words

  • Numbers 10:1-11:23
  • Mark 14:1-21
  • Psalm 51:1-19
  • Proverbs 10:31-32

While he was in Bethany reclining at the table in the home of Simon the Leper, a woman came with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, made of pure nard. She broke the jar and poured the perfume on his head.

Marl 14:3

Everything I write here today, or any day for that matter, is in pure worship to the Lord. God changed my life for the better and in all I do, I intend it to give God the glory and praise like the woman who anointed Jesus.

Having said that, what I am posting today is also in curiosity of how to approach God. In the readings from Numbers today, Moses isn’t very happy with God, in fact, he seems resentful and irritated about the role in which God has put him. So in a complete sense of awe and worship, I journal about this conversation between God and Moses.

Before I begin I pray: Lord, I thank you that I know You, and I believe that this recorded conversation You and Moses had is an example of how we imperfect humans can talk to you. We can talk to you in our rawness and pain and hurt and happiness and excitement and doubt and fear and irritation and anger and pain and joy and love and ……., Well, You get it….in our human-ness. These verses that are recorded in Numbers are an example of just how much you love and accept us and that You will receive our words and meet us where we are. Help me to communicate that well. Amen.

The rabble with them began to crave other food, and again the Israelites started wailing and said, “If only we had meat to eat! We remember the fish we at in Egypt at no cost – also the cucumbers, melons, leaks, onions and garlic. But now we have lost our appetite; we never see anything but this manna! The manna was like coriander seed and looked like resin. The people went around gathering it, and then ground it in a hand mill or crushed in a mortar. They cooked it in a pot or made it into loaves. And it tasted like something made with olive oil. When the dew settled on the camp at night, the manna also came down.

Numbers 11:4-9

The Israelites were in a DESERT. Deserts aren’t known for their plentiful food supply or water supply. This was the only resource they had, and all they had to do was gather what God had provided and prepare it. They didn’t have to punch a clock or hunt it down. It just showed up. But this wasn’t good enough, they complained and dreamt about the days of old, where they had to make bricks out of clay for a meager day’s wage.

On a side note, they were SLAVES back in Egypt. They probably didn’t have access to much other than bread anyway. But this “rabble” represents those who distract them from the reality of what slavery was, filling their heads with what they “should be entitled to”.

Ever complained about what life was like “before”? Yea. Me too. Not proud of it.

Moses heard the people of every family wailing at the entrance to their tents. The Lord became exceedingly angry, and Moses was troubled.

Numbers 11: 10

Uh oh. God’s gonna get mad ya’ll! You saw what happened the last time he got mad! There was vengeance to pay! “Moses was troubled….”

He asked the Lord,

Why have you brought this trouble on your servant?

What have I done to displease you that you put the burden of all these people on me?

Did I conceive all these people? Did I give them birth?

Why do you tell me to carry them in my arms as a nurse carries and infant, to the land You promised on oath to their ancestors?

Where can I get meat for all these people? They keep wailing to me, ‘Give us meat to eat! I cannot carry all these people to myself; the burden is too heavy for me.

If this is how You are going to treat me, please go ahead and kill me – if I have found favor in your eyes – and do not let me face my own ruin.

Number 11:11-15

At first Moses seems to try and put a guilt trip on God. “Look at what YOU have put on ME! Why have YOU done THIS to ME!! YOU did this to ME! I don’t deserve this! How dare you God! You said you were going to save the people, but why put this burden on me! I was doing just fine out with my family before this fame and fortune, and…..etc etc etc.

But this is good stuff ya’ll….listen, God can take this. So God is just quiet and then I picture Moses caving in falling to his knees, begging for this burden to be lifted. Its too heavy Lord, I can’t do it! I feel so alone….Help me.

The Lord says to Moses: “Bring me seventy of Israel’s elders who are known to you as leaders and officials among the people Have them come to the tent of meeting, that they may stand there with you. I will come down and speak with you there, and I will take some of the power of the Spirit that is on you and put it on them. They will share the burden of the people with you so that you will not have to carry it alone.

Numbers 11:16-17

God provides for Moses’ need. Moses gets raw and real and desperate and God is sending help in the form of church elders.

Friends, your church leaders are just humans that have received a gift from God. And sometimes, I judge, this gift of leadership comes at a heavy price. There have been some pretty serious wrongs done by church leaders and I wonder if its because they didn’t scream for help when the burden got to be too much! Everyone needs help, and no one can carry the leadership load alone. Here God provided an accountability group for Moses. People, in their human pride get scared to ask for help.

If you are a church leader, do you have an accountability group?

Does your church leader have a support group?

No one is meant to walk this journey alone. Don’t be afraid to speak to God HONESTLY and then DO WHAT HE SAYS to do to get the help you need.

Tell the people: ‘Consecrate yourselves in preparation for tomorrow, when you will eat meat. The Lord heard you when you wailed, “if only we had meat to eat! We were better off in Egypt!” Now the Lord will give you meat, and you will eat it. You will not eat it for just one day, or two days, or five, ten or twenty days, but for a whole month – until it comes out of your nostrils and you loathe it – because you have rejected the Lord, who is among you, and have wailed before him, “why did we ever leave Egypt?

Numbers 11: 18-20

Uhhhhh, have you ever heard the phrase, “be careful what you wish for, because you just might get it”? Yea, it applies here. The people got quail all right. I came falling from the sky around them. When the quail came, it came in droves and the people had to clean them and prepare them. So let’s put that in to visual.

Quail falls from the sky. Then it has to be de-feathered. Then it has to be gutted. Then it has to be cooked. Then the bones, guts and feathers have to be burned, buried or disposed of somehow, or they’re going to rot and stink, right? Every single meal and day for a month. Plus they have the manna to deal with. Now what happens if they don’t process with quail? Well, it rots, right? Then maggots and flies gather. Plus the meat is going to attract predators, like coyotes and fox and snakes. So they have to get rid of it fast.

…..until it comes out of your nostrils and you loathe it…..yea, that much.

Be careful what you wish for because you just might get it.

Lord, thank you for all I have and all I will have because of your grace. I thank you for this honest conversation between You and Moses. Help me to know when it’s time to ask for help and to trust you with my burdens, knowing that you will guide me and help me. I pray for the person reading this that if they are in need of an accountability group or a team to help them carry a burden, I pray that they get real and honest with you so that you can send them what they need. I thank you for the opportunity to see that like the Israelites in the desert, we have so much to be grateful for, forgive me when I complain.

What are you grateful for today?

Is there a burden you need help with? How can I pray for you today?

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Just believe

  • Leviticus 11:1-12:8
  • Mark 5:21-43
  • Psalm 38:1-22
  • Proverbs 10:8-9

22Then one of the synagogue leaders, named Jarius, came, and when he saw Jesus, he fell at his feet. 23He pleaded earnestly with him, “My little daughter is dying. Please come and put your hands on her so that she will be healed and live. 24So Jesus went with him.

Mark 5:22-24

Jarius was a synagogue leader, which from my understanding, is a layman whose responsibilities were administrative. There was usually only one synagogue leader so they would be responsible for looking after the building, the administrative work and supervising the worship. This leader had an important role at the synagogue. Jesus had been causing quite an uproar amongst the people and church leadership, so Jarius had heard what Jesus was teaching and doing. Jarius would have likely heard quite a bit of scuffle about this miracle worker.

And Jarius’ daughter was dying. Church leader or not, his daughter was dying, and I can’t even imagine the desperation that brings on. Jarius had come to the end of all he could do, there was no hope left. She was dying.

Then in Verse 25…

25And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. 26She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse.

Mark 5:25-26

She had her menstrual period for 12 years. Uhhhhh….ladies, can you imagine? Ugh. Praise God, I’m past that time in life, but oh my goodness, do I remember the inconvenience of that! This could have been a post childbirth issue that never quite healed up, or she could have been like many women I know, that their menstrual cycles just don’t ever regulate. For us today, it’s quite an inconvenience and you can bet your sweet britches that I’d be seeing every doctor I could find to get this fixed!!

But in Jesus times….it was more than a complication. Post childbirth regulations and menstrual purification regulations were quite a sentance. In today’s Old Testament readings we see a portion of this:

“A woman who becomes pregnant and gives birth to a son will be ceremonially unclean for seven days, just as she is unclean during her monthly period…..If she gives birth to a daughter, for two weeks the woman will be unclean, as during her period. Then she must wait sixty-six days to be purified from her bleeding.

When the days of her purification for a son or daughter are over, she is to bring to the priest at the entrance to the tent….

In this way the priest will make atonement for her.

Leviticus 12:1-8

There’s a whole chapter in today’s readings dedicated to the uncleanliness of a woman after childbirth. When any animal is unclean or any human is considered unclean they were to be exiled from their community.

So for this poor woman, it had been twelve years of uncleanliness and isolation.

Twelve years in quarantine.

Twelve years of shut-downs.

When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.”

Mark 5:27-28

Can you hear it? Can you hear her tears? If I can just touch his clothes. If I can just get close. If he will just look at me. If SOMEONE will just look at me. If someone will just HELP ME! I can’t take this anymore!

The synagogue leader and the outcast woman had one thing in common.

Desperation.

They were both at the end of their options.

They were both at the end of their rope.

All they had left was faith in this Jesus fellow that everyone was talking about. What else was left, ya know? It’s worth a shot, right?

While Jesus was still speaking, some people came from the house of Jairus the synagogue leader. “Your daughter is dead,” they said. Why bother the teacher anymore?

Mark 5:35

Can you say PEER PRESSURE!! It was his people that were pressuring Jarius to doubt. Notice that its Jarius FRIENDS bringing on the confusion to what Jarius believed to be true. And you know what….it was WHILE JESUS WAS STILL SPEAKING! These doubters couldn’t wait to cloud the testimony!

Overhearing what they said, Jesus told him, “Don’t be afraid; just believe.”

Mark 5:36

Lord, I thank you that you overhear the haters in my life that want to cause me to doubt. I thank you that you can be heard above the noise, if I just listen. For any reader that may be at the end of their hope today, I pray that you speak to their heart. I pray with you that each of us “Don’t be afraid.” I pray for the faith of the woman and the belief of the leader, give me that kind of hope. Give my readers that kind of hope. We need to hear you above the noise.

Have you lost hope friend? What needs healed in you today?

Do you really believe? Can you really trust in this Jesus?

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized