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Affluent Christian Investor | October 21, 2017

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Leadership Lesson From Exodus: Sometimes Shortcuts Aren’t Shorter

“The Children of Israel Crossing the Jordan” by Benjamin West, 1800..

“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I- I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.”
-Robert Frost

I remember back when my son was about eight-years old. Often when he was riding in the car with me he would say, “Turn here, let’s take the shortcut.” In actuality the shortcuts he referenced were usually alternative routes that were longer.

That’s the difference between an adult driver and adolescent rider. As an adult I’m fully aware that the shortest distance between two points is a straight line, and I’m always looking for the shortest and fastest way to get to where I’m going.

It’s a good thing God doesn’t operate that way.

In Exodus 13:17 we find the following example of how God often takes us the long way for our own protection: When Pharaoh let the people go, God did not lead them on the road through the Philistine country, though that was shorter. For God said, “If they face war, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.” The passages that follow note that the nation of Israel “went out of Egypt armed for battle (v. 18).” I’ve got to believe that they thought that they were ready to fight. God knew differently and He protected them.

The long way God led his people put them on the banks of the Red Sea, trapped by an Egyptian army that surely would crush them. The people complained to Moses about the route in which God had led them. Moses answered with, “The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still ( Exodus 14:14).”

Oh the pain of just being still! But it worked because it was God’s way not theirs.

You and I don’t know where the shortcuts or the long ways will take us, but we know that the Lord goes before us ( Deut. 31:8) and with us. And He promises to “never leave you nor forsake you ( Deut. 31:6).”

What is not going your way right now? Ask God to search your heart to see if you are going His way. Remember His ways are not our ways, and they are usually not the shortest distance between two points. But His ways are always His ways, and it’s always a better way than we had planned.

Let us remember to be still and let the God of creation fight for us. If we do, the long way – the road less traveled – will make all the difference.



Originally published on Weekly Winning Thought.

Bill Edmonds is an Executive Coach and Business Consultant who works with leaders and organizations in the areas of personal and organizational development to help them reach their full potential. He spent 24 years with Merrill Lynch as a Director and Market Executive. For more information as to how his firm can serve you, or to book him to speak to your group, visit: Northstar Leadership Solutions


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