Closing the Stress Gap

SERIES – How to Keep on Keeping on

Exodus 18:13-20 GNV

13   The next day Moses was settling disputes among the people, and he was kept busy from morning till night.

14   When Jethro saw everything that Moses had to do, he asked, “What is all this that you are doing for the people? Why are you doing this all alone, with people standing here from morning till night to consult you?”

15   Moses answered, “I must do this because the people come to me to learn God’s will.

16   When two people have a dispute, they come to me, and I decide which one of them is right, and I tell them God’s commands and laws.”

17   Then Jethro said, “You are not doing this right.

18   You will wear yourself out and these people as well. This is too much for you to do alone.

19   Now let me give you some good advice, and God will be with you. It is right for you to represent the people before God and bring their disputes to him.

20   You should teach them God’s commands and explain to them how they should live and what they should do.

Stress is the gap between the demands that are placed upon you and the strength you have to meet the demands.

Exodus 12:37 NIV – The Israelites journeyed from Rameses to Succoth. There were about six hundred thousand men on foot, besides women and children.

Exodus 14:11-12 NIV11 They said to Moses, “Was it because there were no graves in Egypt that you brought us to the desert to die? What have you done to us by bringing us out of Egypt? 12 Didn’t we say to you in Egypt, ‘Leave us alone; let us serve the Egyptians’? It would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the desert!”

Exodus 16:3 NIV – The Israelites said to them, “If only we had died by the Lord’s hand in Egypt! There we sat around pots of meat and ate all the food we wanted, but you have brought us out into this desert to starve this entire assembly to death.”

Exodus 17:3 NIV – But the people were thirsty for water there, and they grumbled against Moses. They said, “Why did you bring us up out of Egypt to make us and our children and livestock die of thirst?”

How to Close the Stress Gap

I. Recognize your limitations

II. Share the load

The number one lesson successful people learn is that no one is successful alone.

Ways Moses would share the load

  1. Death
  2. Delegation

A. Find the right people

Characteristics of a Great Leader

  1. Servant’s heart
  2. Positive attitude
  3. Growth potential
  4. Able to follow through
  5. Resiliency
  6. Integrity
  7. Big Picture Mind Set
  8. Discipline
  9. Humble
  10. Loyalty

B. Give them the right job

C. Trust them to do the right thing

Numbers 11:17 GNV – I will come down and speak with you there, and I will take some of the spirit I have given you and give it to them. Then they can help you bear the responsibility for these people, and you will not have to bear it alone.

III. Be a good steward of freed up time.

  1. Release your frustrations
  2. Rest your body
  3. Refocus on God
  4. Recommit to your primary responsibility

Acts 6:1-7 GNV1 Some time later, as the number of disciples kept growing, there was a quarrel between the Greek-speaking Jews and the native Jews. The Greek-speaking Jews claimed that their widows were being neglected in the daily distribution of funds. 2 So the twelve apostles called the whole group of believers together and said, “It is not right for us to neglect the preaching of God’s word in order to handle finances. 3 So then, friends, choose seven men among you who are known to be full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom, and we will put them in charge of this matter. 4 We ourselves, then, will give our full time to prayer and the work of preaching.” 5 The whole group was pleased with the apostles’ proposal, so they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and the Holy Spirit, and Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolaus, a Gentile from Antioch who had earlier been converted to Judaism. 6 The group presented them to the apostles, who prayed and placed their hands on them. 7 And so the word of God continued to spread. The number of disciples in Jerusalem grew larger and larger, and a great number of priests accepted the faith.

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