It’s that time of year when leaders might need some help. Perhaps those of us who are full of years might be the ones to *hold up our Moses’ arms!
Post-holiday realities are galumphing back into leaders’ priorities: Future planning, fiscal years wrapping up, performance reviews, annual meeting reports. Some leaders might be nearly overwhelmed by start-of-year tasks, roles or responsibilities; the forces working against their success or the thought of all those who depend on them. At every turn, metaphorical Amalekites could be pestering them.
Often, these are the folks at the top of organizations, but could also include anyone whose work is critical to a well-functioning society. Company vice-presidents, newspaper columnists, school principals, tax accountants, pastors and congregational presidents. Elected officials, union leaders, government workers. Business owners, denominational leaders, supply chain bosses, community organizers—anyone whose responsibilities might be overwhelming.
The best people to hold up leaders’ arms might be older adults. We know what it feels like to have the weight of the world on one’s shoulders. We’re not a threat to leaders’ well-being. Back in the day, our arms were held up by others, and we want to return the favor. We’re kind, gracious and understanding. We value the work of leaders.
“Holding up arms” could mean any number of things. Mostly the task is personal, up-close and tangible. Words help, but so does presence. Positive perspectives may be in short supply. Notes, phone messages, texts, short conversations, deep listening—all helpful in the arm-raising enterprise. And gratitude that’s specific and personal.
In these first days of a new year, look around for some Moses-leaders who could benefit from your support, wisdom, understanding or presence. Offer yourself to these people as one way of bringing God’s grace to their lives.
*This entry is loosely based on the Bible story about two men who held up Moses’ arms (See Exodus 17:12-14.) In this sidebar Scripture tale, the pesky Amalekites were once again bothering the Israelites as they meandered through the desert. The battle had been engaged, and the Israelites were winning—but only if Moses kept his arms raised! Aaron and Hur took on this task, thus ensuring that the Israelites triumphed.
(To receive these entries when they are posted, go to the upper right hand corner of the top banner and click on the three dots or parallel lines. Scroll down to the subscription form and enter your information.)