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They Shall Bear the Burden of the People

Daily Reading: Numbers 11-12

Scripture Focus: And I will take some of the Spirit that is on you and put it on them, and they shall bear the burden of the people with you, so that you may not bear it yourself alone. (Numbers 11.17b)

Devotional Thought: Recently, I was asked to anoint someone for healing. When we were finished, I put the oil in a brother's hand and asked him - along with the others - to pray for me. I explained that I had had a tough week and was tired and discouraged. My brother prayed: "Help us church members to get behind him and support him and his work." That did more to encourage me than you can imagine.

There are times when a leader grows weary. Consider what Moses said in Numbers 11.14-15: "I am not able to carry all this people alone; the burden is too heavy for me. If you will treat me like this, kill me at once, if I find favor in your sight, that I may not see my wretchedness.” That's discouraged!

How did God answer his prayer? Did he kill him? No. Did he give him super-human strength to bear more of the burden? No. God gave Moses Spirit-filled 'prophets' to help carry that spiritual burden: “Gather for me seventy men of the elders of Israel, whom you know to be the elders of the people and officers over them, and bring them to the tent of meeting, and let them take their stand there with you" (v. 16). The Israelites already had leaders (Jethro's plan) and laborers (Levites). What Moses needed was someone to carry the spiritual burden with him.

I have found it easier (though not easy!) to gain workers than it is to get people to bear the spiritual burden of the church. My prayer is that of Moses in v. 29: “Are you jealous for my sake? Would that all the Lord's people were prophets, that the Lord would put his Spirit on them!”

Prayer: Jesus, raise up for your church 'prophets' on whom the Spirit of God rests, and use these men and women to bear the spiritual burden of your church. Amen.

Psalm of the Day: 25 Save us, we pray, O LORD! O LORD, we pray, give us success! 26 Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD! We bless you from the house of the LORD. 27 The LORD is God, and he has made his light to shine upon us. Bind the festal sacrifice with cords, up to the horns of the altar! 28 You are my God, and I will give thanks to you; you are my God; I will extol you. 29 Oh give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever! (Psalms 118:25-29)

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