January 28

Exodus 32-34, Psalm 28

Many desire to be a leader, but most lack the quality so necessary to hold such a position: humility. The story goes: Once upon a time, a rider came across a few soldiers who were trying to move a heavy log of wood without success. The corporal was standing by just watching as the men struggled. The rider couldn't believe it. He finally asked the corporal why he wasn't helping. The corporal replied: "I am the corporal. I give orders." The rider said nothing in response. Instead, he dismounted his horse. He went up and stood by the soldiers and as they tried to lift the wood and he helped them. With his help, the task was finally able to be carried out. Who was this kind rider? The rider was George Washington, the Commander-in-chief. He quietly mounted his horse and went to the corporal and said, "The next time your men need help, send for the commander-in-chief." It's almost comical that in our nation, the political divide is ever widening with a tremendous amount of animosity shared amongst all. The reality is when you look around Washington, at our nation's leaders in all branches over the past many years, one thing lacking unanimously is humility. Our "leaders" have all acquired a tremendous amount of power and wealth as our nation has steadily declined.

If we want to see what true leadership looks like, we need only turn to the pages of Scripture. Notice Moses' words to God in Exodus 32:31-32, "Then Moses returned to the Lord and said, "Oh, these people have committed a great sin, and have made for themselves a god of gold! Yet now, if You will forgive their sin-but if not, I pray, blot me out of your book which You have written." The only other time we have seen such a level of humility in the heart of a leader was Paul when he said in Romans 9:2-4, "that I have great sorrow and continual grief in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren, my countrymen according to the flesh, who are Israelites,...". These leaders are unfortunately rare in history. They had such a love for those they were leading that they were willing to substitute places with them. Jesus said in John 15:13, "Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one's life for his friends." Then Jesus demonstrated that love by laying down His life for us. When God called the people stiff-necked and threatened not to go before them, we see the response of Moses in Exodus 34:9, "If now I have found grace in your sight, O Lord, let my Lord, I pray, go among us, even though we are a stiff-necked people; and pardon our iniquity and our sin, and take us as Your inheritance."

Moses as a leader didn't trust his intelligence, his leadership skills, his charisma, his sense of what was right and wrong. He, in total humility, realized that if he were to lead these people, he didn't want to go one step forward, unless God led them. That's the model of leadership which all should desire, but is so rare in society and in history. Moses cared so much that he was willing to be accursed that the people might be saved. How many Christians not only don't feel enough burden for the unsaved to exchange places, let alone simply to tell others and share the good news for fear of their response. We, who are in Christ, need to model this humility if we are to effectively lead anywhere: our homes, our workplaces, etc. God did not call us so that we can be absorbed into society. We were called so that we could lead as exemplified by leaders like Moses and Paul, but especially by our Messiah, Jesus. If we only began to love and lead like this we would see revival sweep across our nation and our world.

Messages from Pastor Lloyd Pulley:

Marj Lancaster