Leader: Are you Weary in the Wilderness?

Desert and Camels

God uses the hard realities of life to expose our deepest fears and internal struggles. These experiences make us more self-aware so we can cultivate the spiritual disciplines necessary to lead ourselves and others well. Consider what happened to Moses, the humblest person on earth (Num. 12:3). After the people complained about their misfortunes yet again in the wilderness, Moses was miserable. He cried out to the Lord: “What have I done to displease you that you put the burden of all these people on me? Did I conceive all these people? Did I give them birth? Why do you tell me to carry them in my arms, as a nurse carries an infant, to the land you promised? … If this is how you are going to treat me, please go ahead and kill me” (Num. 11:11–12, 15).

Who would have thought that the humblest man in the world could fall so deep into despair? Have you ever found yourself in such a state of weariness? There are many days in my life when I find myself praying: “God, please don’t let me become weary in doing good, for I know that at the proper time I will reap a harvest if I don’t give up. Help me to press on and do good to all people, especially to those who belong to your family” (see Gal. 6:9–10). This prayer is particularly helpful when I’m going through a wilderness experience or dealing with difficult people. Prayer disciplines us to humble ourselves before God, and it also provides revelation for how to move forward.
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An Invitation to Strengthen the Soul of Your Leadership

Why I picked up this book:

Strengthening your soul for leadership book coverA better question would be, “Why would I not pick up any book written by Ruth Haley Barton?” I have several books of hers and use them for “check-ins” with myself, to get a pulse on if I’m running too fast, need to listen more intently, or live more deeply. I read through her books slowly, not because they aren’t good, but because it is necessary for me to do so. Reading this book as been a practice in spiritual formation.

 

Who Should Read Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership:

 

This book is particularly helpful for leaders, especially those who are living fast-paced and full lives. With prayer, inspirational quotes, thought-provoking questions, spiritual practices and scriptures throughout, it centers us on God, gives good perspective, and invites us into a spiritual rich, and physically and emotionally healthy way of being in the world.

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The Wilderness and the Ordinary Life

I’m heartbroken as I read though Moses wilderness journey in the Exodus account. Moses was a faithful servant of God. He prayed often and sought the Lord for guidance. The Bible records that, “The Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as a man speaks with his friend (Exodus 33:11 NIV).” In spite of his intimacy with God, Moses had a difficult life. He spent more time with God than he did with his family, his own flesh and blood turned on him (Num 12: 1), he watched (and actually ordered) friends and loved ones killed for their disobedience to the Lord (Exodus 33: 27-30), the rest of them died over a period of 40 years while wandering in the desert, and in spite of all that, he didn’t get to enter the Promised Land.

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