This is the seventh and final week in our study through Deuteronomy, titled "MObedience Momentum".
Next week we will have our master quiz on all that we've learned, so you won't want to miss it. This week's message is titled "Mo Ning" and looks at the last chapter of Deuteronomy, that reflects on Moses' life and his example as a Godly leader.
1. Great leaders have a vision that outlives them. Deuteronomy 34:1-4
Anyone who has ever done anything of import has done something that outlived them. In family - Parents give birth to children, fully expecting NOT to see and experience that child's entire life. In business - Walt Disney never got to see the fruition to many of his corporate dreams. In faith - we live everyday of our lives, as Christians, "spreading the good news," not fully comprehending the power that goes with our sharing the gospel. We will touch many lives and never know it.
To truly create something of value and substance, that something must be greater than who or what you are. To create something only for THIS life is only as large as you are.
Jesus started the greatest movement in history with 12 men (and one of those betrayed him and later killed himself). With that small band of misfits, Christianity has moved throughout the world and continues with every generation down through history.
You have been created to live a life that will make an impact upon the world LARGER than yourself. God is working his good and perfect will into you, creating a never-ending process of vision enlargement.
2. Great leaders accept the discipline of God. Deuteronomy 34:4
Along the way of realizing God's process of vision enlargement, we are called to face seasons of discipline. They are called "seasons" of discipline because, during those times, we are shaped and molded for the next phase of God's vision in our life. Once God's discipline has done its work in us, we are then freed - for a season - to live out that next, larger "vision" in God's plan for our lives.
But, God is never content to bring us to a plateau of maturity. He is working to bring us to ever-increasing stages of growth and maturity in Him. That means we are always moving from a season of discipline to a larger vision and then to a new season of discipline and on to an even larger vision.
3. Great leaders trust in the care of God. Deuteronomy 34:5
We don't live in a world that readily embraces the idea of spiritual vision OR living a life of ever increasing discipline. Both of these are in conflict with the carnal, temporal, small thinking of the world.
For a Christian who is going through a time of vision enlargement and, thereby, a season of discipline, it is crucial to be at a place where we are seeing the invisible reality of God (a relationship with Him). That means we are walking by faith and NOT by sight. Spiritual vision relies on the creator of all things, not the thing themselves.
When we walk by faith, we see things in light of the promise that God will take care of us, and we learn - as we mature - to trust in that promise more and more. When a challenge comes our way (financial, relational, career, etc.), we see that as a season of discipline instead of a horrible time in our lives.
4. Great leaders seek the face of God. Deuteronomy 34:10-12
It's one thing to endure the seasons of discipline as a time of testing and struggle, quite another to joyfully walk through those seasons, hand-in-hand with the God who loves you. Likewise, it's one thing to fearfully and timidly embrace the vision God lays on your heart, quite another to boldly, and with keen focus, walk into the adventure of where God is leading.
God never calls us to something to be left alone. He will partner with us, meet us there, if we are willing. It's one thing to try and trust God, an entirely different thing to know God well enough that trust is a natural by-product of that relationship.
Knowing God face-to-face is the only way that we can live in joy in the seasons of discipline and boldly face the next step of our vision enlargement.
If you are walking with the Lord today, you are probably in one of these phases right now. What is your mentality? Are you embracing the growth or becoming frustrated with it?