Moses and Joshua
I was recently in the company of a woman who is a master quilter, having produced thousands of quilts in her lifetime. As a child, I watched my grandmother make quilts, so I appreciate the skill, artistry and patience required to make one. In days gone by, quilts were a necessity. Today, many are made for keepsakes or display. One thing is certain, we are quickly losing the generation of quilt makers. Few people in the generation before me make quilts, and few people my age produce the beautiful heirloom pieces. The limited number of quilters these days were taught by older quilt makers.
Older people who feel they are not of much use to the local church are mistaken. They possess a treasure trove of wisdom and knowledge. While children, youth and young adults are the future of the church, they must be guided in their faith journey by older, more mature members. Each person in the church plays a role in the maturity of the body of Christ.
Seek God’s direction in who will carry on after you. (12–17)
Statistics are an interesting device of measurement. One statistic remaining intact is that 100% of us will die one day if the Lord does not return before then. Moses knew this, and he had a heart for the people God chose him to lead. He was concerned about who would lead them after his death.
Moses used this opportunity to seek God’s heart and will. This glimpse into his personal life highlights the necessity for each of us to seek God when we are faced with questions and desire the right course.
Disciple and empower the one you mentor. (18–20)
Joshua is one of the great men in Scripture. In your mind, he may have stood in Moses’ shadow, but his qualities of endurance and commitment are remarkable and reveal his integrity. He did not seek power or prestige. His goal was to please the Lord.
Joshua was Moses’s assistant and servant. He had been on the mountain with Moses and had been under his leadership and teaching for 40 years. Most importantly, God had been preparing him for this moment the entire time. It is estimated millions followed Moses in the wilderness, but he mentored and invested in the power of one man named Joshua.
Publicly affirm God’s work in the life of the one you mentor. (21–23)
In Southern Baptist life, we can think of gifted Bible expositors who held a high view of the authority of Scripture and knew how to finish well. They realized the ministry they were called to and the One who called them was bigger than them. In many cases, we see where they were able to bless those who followed them in their pastorates and publicly affirm them. They may have even appealed to the church members to support and pray for the new leader.
God is not calling you or me to be Moses, Joshua or any modern-day leader. He is calling you to seek someone to mentor and also to humbly learn from another. If we all contribute our patchwork pieces, what a quilt we will make!
By Bobby McKay
Pastor of New Liberty Baptist Church in Morton, Mississippi