Moving Forward, pt1
Leadership in Context with Keith Tucci
Tell the sons of Israel to turn back and camp before Pi-hahiroth, between Migdol and the sea; you shall camp in front of Baal-zephon, opposite it, by the sea.
Here is an Egyptian reference to a god, Baal-zephon, which means god of the typhoon. There is a Hebrew word there, Pi-hahiroth, which means a place where the sedge grows. Sedge is a very heavy grass, a three-bladed grass. It is great for livestock. It grows back, doesn’t get trampled down, and retains the soil. The children of Israel took care of livestock to feed themselves. They had passed this place on the way to the Promise Land, and God had them double back to the place where the sedge grows.
In order to go forward, sometimes we not only have to leave bad places, but sometimes we have to leave good places to get to the best place. The worst place to be is a good place that is not the right place.
Now the Israelites are in this good place, but Pharaoh has decided he wants them back and he is descending upon them. They either have to stay in the land of sedge and take their chances or follow Moses to a place they don’t know. They were very afraid. God knows our frailties.
Now when Pharaoh had let the people go, God did not lead them by the way of the land of the Philistines, even though it was near; for God said, “The people might change their minds when they see war, and return to Egypt.”
God did not take the direct route with them. He boxed them in. He set them up for success. He put them in a place where they would really have to choose to go forward. This path was what we call a fake retreat. It was a military move of the Holy Spirit. Pharaoh saw them wandering in the wilderness, or so he thought.
Maybe you feel like you are in a retreat. Maybe something has not gone well—ministry, relationships, a business failure. You find yourself backing up to re-group. It’s important to include a re-group in the backing up, the fake retreat. While you are backing up, use this as a training time. Learn along the way instead of just waiting until you arrive to figure out what to do. Train, learn, grow—even in the midst of the backing up—so that when the forward time comes, you are ready to move forward.
When all of this was going on around Moses and the children of Israel were not happy about leaving the land of sedge, God said to Moses to tell the children of Israel to go forward.
Then the Lord said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to Me? Tell the sons of Israel to go forward.
Forward is not a place. Forward is a motion. Forward is a commitment. If we are going to go somewhere, God wants us to go forward. We must be committed to forward action, not just as an idea or a theory. Where are you right now—the place where God wants you to move forward from?
In the next few podcasts, I’m going to give you some very definite steps that will really help you move forward, based on things I have walked through in my life.
Join us next week as Keith Tucci continues to put leadership truth in the context of the local church. And as always, please like, share, rate/review, and invite others to listen. See you next week!