Listen To ME!

Leaders will face the temptation of making their leadership all about them. It is easy to slip into thinking, “Man, if people would just listen to me everything would be fine.”

In some cases this might actually be true. In most cases it’s a leader’s over-inflated view of self.

Pastors often get bummed because they make their living talking to people and saying stuff, most of which goes unheeded for various reasons. When people and churches fall apart the pastor takes it personally, “It’s my fault, I didn’t say the right thing, I couldn’t convince them to listen.”

This is a main reason why pastors get burned out. But let me pose this slight possibility: pastors might be totally wrong here. I know, hard to swallow this line of reasoning, but hear me out.

Moses was totally frustrated with the people of Israel. Over and over he told them what to do and they refused to listen. Carnage and judgment came. Now will you listen? They didn’t.

Moses was beside himself, you can truly see the emotions on the sleeves. Finally Moses blew it “And Moses and Aaron gathered the congregation together before the rock, and he said unto them, Hear now, ye rebels; must we fetch you water out of this rock? (Numbers 20:10)”

Ah yes, the infamous double-smiting of the rock disqualifying Moses from entering the Promised Land. God’s judgment on him sounds like this, “Because ye believed me not, to sanctify me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore ye shall not bring this congregation into the land which I have given them.”

God was not sanctified in the eyes of Israel. Note carefully what Moses said above, “Must WE fetch you water?” We? Moses and Aaron could get water out of a rock? Reeeealllly.

God does stuff. You have to trust that. It’s not about you and your power to get water out of a heart of stone. You can’t. The leader’s job is to listen himself, to sanctify the Lord God in his own heart. To listen to God. Plant and water and God gives the increase.

Oh is this hard. Moses tripped over it. I trip over it all the time. It’s a temptation to think you can actually change someone, if they’d only listen. You’ll go nuts and God won’t appreciate the attitude. This is a hard one for me, I confess that openly. Even so Lord, come quickly.

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