Moses was a great and wise leader. This is greatly punctuated when Moses hears and heeds advice from his father-in-law, Jethro. Read the story here: Exodus 18 . May I offer three critical pieces of advice from an old mentor to new leader?
Don’t Do Everything.
Moses was selected to lead a nation. He had his brother Aaron beside him most of the time however, Moses was the one dealing with all the decisions, direction and discipline within the camp. As God’s choice, he was carrying a load of responsibility and doing almost everything himself. As Jethro comes for a visit, he notices quickly that Moses needs a break and must employ others around him.
Jethro’s advice: Leaders must be very careful to not get bogged down in daily affairs which can be handled by other competent leaders. Let others lead with you.
Moses already had some trusted friends and family surrounding him helping him speak and lead on occasion. In Exodus chapter 17, he employed Aaron and Hur during a battle which Joshua fought. However, Moses was not using other people very well in ordinary and common affairs. Jethro quickly surmised that much of Moses’ energy was going to things that could have been done just as well by other leaders around him if Moses would simply delegate wisely. This meant that Moses had to seek them out, equip them and empower them with authority.
Jethro’s advice: Put wise people in charge, even if it’s “common” or “ordinary” daily tasks because power and pride are strong. Use humble people to serve others.
It can be a difficult task for a leader with such responsibility that Moses had to listen to another man…especially if he has been hearing from God as much as Moses had. However, Moses was not foolish enough to dismiss his father-in-law’s advice. Moses realized that Jethro had been God sent and he took advantage of the advice regardless of where it was coming from. Family can be some of the hardest people to glean advice but they can also be some of our greatest resources. Taking time to deliberately listen to the people God has sovereignly placed in your life is a great lesson to learn. Moses heeded his father-in-law’s advice and his life was much better.
Jethro’s advice: listen to the people God puts around you, even if it’s family. Learn from everything and listen for God in every conversation.
How has God used a family member to teach you an invaluable lesson? Comment and respond and let us hear from you.