Moses led about two million stubborn people, through a desert, with few resources. What did he see as his primary obligations?
You might be surprised to see this first, but Moses said, “As for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the LORD by failing to pray for you. And I will teach you the way that is good and right.” 1 Samuel 12:23
In other words, Moses saw intercession for the people he led as a direct obligation to God.
2. Ongoing connection with God
Which accomplishments of Moses could have happened apart from his interaction with God? The miracles, the instructions for the tabernacle, and the law, were all given by God. In addition, when Moses went to worship, the people responded with their own worship (Exodus 33: 8 –10).
If you can keep the sheep away from the wolf, you will still need to protect the sheep from each other 🙂 I include this here, because I feel the responsibility—not because I think I’ve mastered it. I do think that as people come to experience God’s grace, they offer more grace to each other. I also think teaching helps.
4. Teaching the people
When the people came to Moses with a dispute, he didn’t just judge between them, he says he explained God’s instructions (Exodus 18:16). Jesus emphasized this too. When he placed Peter in leadership he told him three times “Feed my sheep” (John 21:15–17).
By now, you’ve probably noticed a common thread. These obligations depend on our personal experience with God. I suspect I’ve heard that many times and thought, “Yeah I know that. Let’s get to the important things, the practical things.” As time goes by, I realize that is the most practical thing.
It’s the process of transformation that releases the Spirit, not arriving at a certain spiritual level. As decisions multiply, I need to grow in faith. When busyness increases, I am trying to learn how to pray more (rather than work longer and pray less). I am trying to learn how to experience rest in the Spirit even while I work.
Did I mention we are having a conference on rest? 🙂