Week 41 ~ PINCHAS (Numbers 25:10-30:1) (29:40)
At Kadesh Spring, Moses saw God’s chosen Nation as rebels who rebelled against his authority. Moses lost his laser focus on Adonai. His internal frustration with the people overtook his focus and Moses lashed out, striking the rock instead of speaking to it, as the intermediary of The Most-High. This was an expression of a deep, spiritual condition for Moses, on one very difficult day!
This is the Lesson of the Listening Leader. As we ponder the life of Moses and the miracles which were hallmarks of it, from the tiny Ark which led to his adoption by the Princess of Egypt, to his return to Egypt as the anointed deliverer, through the historical account of the ten plagues, and the leading of the nation through the birth travail of the Red Sea, we can attest to Moses’ greatest strength. He was a listening leader. He sought the Lord first in all things. Moses turned toward Adonai to seek His face, turning his back on life and the culture of the day. We have heard this term throughout history; the challenges which face us. In this statement, there is opportunity! We can either face the challenges head-on in our own strength, like Moses and Aaron at the Spring at Kadesh, or we can anticipate challenges, and face Adonai, prayerfully listening for His direction. Adonai speaks in a still, small voice.
This is the Lesson of the Listening Leader. As I sought the Lord for the lesson of this Parashah, I prayed for clarity through the many facets of historical accounts which converge in this time of biblical history for the Nation of Israel. As I spoke aloud the sequence of events in Pinchas, I heard these words; “Leaders must have spiritual ears to hear the things of the Spirit.” As members of a royal priesthood, now grafted into the Nation of Israel, we must first seek to hear from God, in all the chapters of our lives.
Like the story in this Parashah, our lives are also fragmented with many subplots taking place, all at once. How can we lead, without having spiritual ears to hear from the Lord? We must develop a listening leadership like Moses, one day at a time. We can learn from his mistake at the Spring of Kadesh, where he lost his focus. He listened to his own reasoning; his ears were turned inward by his own misgivings, instead of toward Adonai.
This is the Lesson of the Listening Leader. The Torah brings wisdom, whose profit exceeds that of silver and gold! “She is a tree of life to those who grasp her; whoever holds fast to her will be made happy.” (Proverbs 3:18 CJB)
Take hold of her branches, dear seeker, and be blessed and made wise!
CANDLEGLOW LESSON FOR SHABBAT:
SEEK! FIND! SHARE! This week’s Torah lesson is a deep one about how a leader navigates challenge, keeping a narrow focus on the power of God, instead of the circumstances swirling around them in a given, difficult moment in time. We all have leadership responsibilities in some area of our lives.
If we are a spouse, a parent, a son or daughter of aging parents, or if we are leading a business venture or ministry for the Lord, there is an area of leadership which we step into as we mature. In moments of extreme stress and anxiety experienced in a challenge of any kind, what do we SEEK? We usually seek the path of least resistance, which will not lead to victory. What will we FIND, as we seek the victory in our own strength? We will find failure. What will we SHARE, or sow into others who witness our lack of true leadership? We will share a mixed result instead of the purest, humble victory. In spite of the weak moment for Moses, the Lord’s mercy for the people was so great that the water still poured forth from the rocks to quench the thirst of His nation. Yet, in the aftermath, there was a consequence for the fleshly reaction of Moses during what should have been the holiest of merciful miracles, with Moses as the conduit for the Lord!
During this Sabbath rest, may we consider Moses and his humble ministry to the Lord. Are we this kind of humble leader? Even for the man considered the humblest servant in all the earth by the words of the Lord Himself, there was a moment of misdirected frustration. The Lord had promised water to quench the thirst of the entire nation. The miracle of the water was also for Moses!
May we rest dear seekers, in the goodness of our God on this Shabbat. It is at His feet that we can lay all our cares, all our mistakes, all our missteps, and ask for His living water to flow over us, again.
Shabbat Shalom, dear Treasured People. (Am Segulah)