Saturday, March 6

Humble, secure leadership

Scripture: Numbers 11-12, Psalm 28, Matthew 6

Numbers 11:29 But Moses replied, “Are you jealous for my sake? I wish that all the Lord’s people were prophets and that the Lord would put his Spirit on them!”

Observation

There is so much in today’s reading, but I settled on this: Moses’ humble and secure leadership.  

Moses complained to the Lord that the burden of leadership was too much for him to handle alone.  The Lord told him to gather 70 of Israel’s elders and the Lord would put His Spirit (which was on Moses) on them too so that they could share the burden of leadership.  

Moses gathered the elders and the Lord put His Spirit on them and they prophesied (but only this one time).  However, two of the elders had stayed back in the camp; we don’t know why.  But the Lord’s Spirit rested on them too, and they prophesied where they were.  

Joshua reported this to Moses and asked Moses to stop them, presumably to protect Moses’ unique authority and position.  And v. 29 is Moses’ response.  He was not concerned about protecting his authority or leadership; in fact, he wished that the all of God’s people were filled with the Spirit and would prophesy.  In other words, he wished that everyone were gifted and led by the Spirit as he was.  Rather than protecting and defending his leadership and unique position, he wanted to share it.

In the next chapter, it says that Moses was the most humble man on earth!  It certainly takes a humble and secure leader to do what Moses did here.

Application

Christian leadership is humble and secure, not self-protective and defensive.  So often leaders are territorial, defensive and insecure.  They resist sharing authority.  They feel threatened by others’ gifts, abilities and successes.  They aren’t able to rejoice when others succeed.  

I have felt all those fears and insecurities at times in my ministry.  I have had to battle them and I sympathize with leaders who feel them.  I needed—we need—the Lord’s help to overcome our insecurities and lead from a place of emotional health and maturity, like Moses, that allows us to celebrate others not resent them.

Compare Jesus in Mark 9:38-41, or Paul in Philippians 1:15-18—both are good examples of humble, secure, non-defensive leadership.  

Prayer: Lord, help me to be secure in You so that I can honestly desire others to succeed and celebrate them when it happens!