You oversleep. You get a cold shower because your teenagers took all the hot water. Then you break a shoelace. The car is out of gas. You are late for the meeting with the elders. Your Bible is suddenly missing. In the middle of the meeting your wife calls to tell you that she has a flat tire. We’ve all been there.
Then a member calls about a problem that is important to them. Now what? Sometimes the preacher is so frustrated with the other things in his day that he doesn’t give attention to his members. He’s short and maybe even a rude. The member gets off the phone feeling unimportant and a bother. Later those feeling turn to anger over the way they were treated.
Preacher’s don’t have bad days do they? Everything is right in the preacher’s life and there should be no reason why shouldn’t be happy and chipper!
We know better. Preachers have stinking, rotten days just like everyone. And, like everyone else, we don’t always cover it very well.
Moses had a few of those bad days. The Israelites gripped about everything. In Genesis 16:1ff they complained about food. Numbers 14:1ff has the nation whining about the bad report from the land of Canaan. In chapter 17 they complained about Moses’ leadership.
It is amazing Moses did as well as he did. But he did have a breakdown once. In Numbers 11 the people were complaining about their troubles. Apparently they wanted everything handed to them on a silver platter. Moses could take it no more.
Moses said to the LORD, “Why have you dealt ill with your servant? And why have I not found favor in your sight, that you lay the burden of all this people on me? Did I conceive all this people? Did I give them birth, that you should say to me, ‘Carry them in your bosom, as a nurse carries a nursing child,’ to the land that you swore to give their fathers? Where am I to get meat to give to all this people? For they weep before me and say, ‘Give us meat, that we may eat.’ 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.”
Clearly, Moses had a bad day.
Notice how God dealt with the disgruntled deliverer. Beginning in verse 16 the Lord gave Moses help. He appointed 70 elders to assist Moses with his duties. God saw that Moses was struggling.
Sometimes your preacher has a bad day. You will never know, nor should you, all of the trials he is facing. But understand that he is very human and some days just doesn’t feel like being Mr. Strength. Remember that he is well aware of his weaknesses but probably doesn’t want everyone to know it. Love him anyway. Be kind to him and encourage him. He needs it. When he is strong, he is able to help you. We are all in this together.
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