The difference between Moses and Jesus

A lead minister’s day is never over. Today is no exception.

After a long afternoon of meetings with the elders, the pastor is ready to settle in for the evening to study and spend time with God. But tonight, he is interrupted yet again by dozens of demands for an audience. One person is mad because they don’t like the layout of the tents at the church cookout. Another is upset at their neighbor over a fence line dispute and wants the minister to settle the argument. And still, another member of the community is demanding justice over a fellow churchgoers’ business dealings.

It never ends. So many demands on his time, big and small.

The next day, it’s time to get work done. The schedule says that the morning will be spent working with the architect on plans for the new worship facility. The afternoon will include going over logistics for a planned move, and the evening will hopefully wrap up with some time with family and rest.

But no, instead it’s just urgency after urgency from people demanding attention now, displacing everything else on the calendar and maintaining the cycle of chaos.

Does this sound familiar?

It did to Moses. He was leading a nation and shepherding a flock all at the same time. But in Exodus 18, he was not handling it particularly well. Jethro, his father-in-law, was very direct in suggesting that Moses rely more on his team, delegating authority in a well-structured way (Exodus 8:13-26).

According to the Bible, Moses took Jethro’s advice and learned the value of team ministry.

Contrast this with the life of Jesus. He didn’t build a ministry and then staff up later as the needs arose. He invested in young followers early, calling them by name and imparting to them the principals of the Kingdom. He modeled spiritual mentoring as a lifestyle, never waiting until things were stressful to delegate authority. He empowered His team from the start, recognizing that imparting the Kingdom to His disciples wasn’t just vital to the success of His ministry: it WAS His ministry.

Each of the 12 disciples carried a deposit from their time with Jesus that lasted their entire lives. They were not merely tagalongs: Jesus saw their futures and the impact they would have and poured His love and wisdom into their hearts early and often. He didn’t just build a team: He STARTED with a team. And as a result, the Great Commission was a success.

Be encouraged this week to take a fresh look at the people in your life that you can empower. You were not meant to carry the load of ministry alone! Even Moses needed people around him to help keep things moving. Jesus is our ultimate example, seeing the value in His team members and activating them in their strengths to do the work of the ministry under the power of the Holy Spirit (Mark 6, Luke 10, John 20).

Let’s lead like Jesus, and see many people be saved and discipled through the power of TEAM ministry!

In Christ,
Steve Holder

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