Refreshment in Refuge
by Gina Burgess
I can't post a picture here, but imagine if you will a lonely turtle placed high up on a post. There is no way the turtle can get there by himself, and there is no way that anyone else (wife or friend or co-worker) can be there with him. It is lonely at the top, is it not?
A manager in a Fortune 500 company keeps a picture of a turtle on a post in his office for that very reason. He keeps a close relationship with those who work for him because he knows he didn't get to the top by himself. Oh, I got the point. I thought it an extremely good point and I've carried that thought around with me. I actually wrote a post about it on my blog, but then I didn't understand the full implications. I wrote from the perspective of the manager and what he meant by keeping a picture of that turtle. "I looked at that picture and couldn't help but think about that poor turtle, stuck up there all by himself with no companionship and nothing to eat, no where to go... not even a cup of coffee to keep him warm", and I wrote about how we have a responsibility to those leaders who are turtles on posts.
Now, I realize that this turtle is completely out of his natural habitat, he has no business being up there, he doesn't know what to do while up there, he is plainly out of place, and most importantly he is going no where. So that manager only has half a clue what that picture literally means. The fact is, we cannot have leadership that are turtles on posts. They aren’t leading, they just exist in a place where they have no business being.
Isaiah 58:11 And Jehovah shall always guide you, and satisfy your soul in dry places, and make strong your bones. And you shall be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water whose waters do not fail.
The perfect leader is God. He not only led with a pillar of cloud by day and made His presence felt in a pillar of fire by night, He led with the words he spoke and the Law He gave. He imbued characteristics in His servant Moses to enable him to lead with wisdom. We can see Moses describing himself as a turtle on a post in Exodus 3:10 LITV And now, come, and I will send you to Pharaoh, and you bring My people out, the sons of Israel out of Egypt. 11 And Moses said to God, Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh, and that I should bring out the sons of Israel from Egypt?
Yet, God knew something that Moses hadn’t grasped. God was the power, wisdom and knowledge behind this endeavor, not Moses. This is a truth that is exhibited all through scripture. From Abraham to John the Baptist we see men and women who are humble and who are willing to let God use them for His own good purposes. What an honor that is.
If it were not for Hannah’s sacrifice, Samuel would not have been such a wonderful judge. If it were not for Esther, all of the Jews could have been killed. If not for Ezra, the Word of God would not have been heard by the Jews who came home to Jerusalem. If not for Nehemiah, the walls would not have been rebuilt in 52 days. If not for Jehoshabeath, there would have been no king of Judah from which Jesus could be descended (2 Chronicles 22).
These spiritual giants from the pages of our Bible did not do these heroic acts because they just decided it would be the right thing to do, nor did they do them for the specific purpose to be famous. They felt inadequate, out of place, weak. God made them strong, gave them wisdom and most importantly, He put them in the specific place where they could do the most good toward His purpose.
From the disciples, to Apostles and all in between, we have heroes who sacrificed themselves to spreading the Gospel around the world. Down through the ages from first century Christians to today, God has used clay pots and bone china for His good purposes to bring Himself glory and to spread the Good News. God doesn’t use turtles on posts. He will choose a turtle on a post, and transform that out of place, without a clue person into something supernaturally suited to His purpose. He uses those who are willing to follow His lead, who trust His ways and His wisdom, and who make that deliberate decision to go where He leads no matter the cost.
It is costly. The Apostles lost their lives for the Truth. Ask any missionary or pastor the sacrifices made to further the Gospel. Ask anyone who has lost a job because of beliefs and faith. Ask any Regular Joe or Josephine who has been placed in an emergency situation.
It is also worthy. Choosing God’s way may not get you any earthly fame or fortune, but you will certainly find a place in the Faithers Hall Of Fame in Heaven. The abundance of Heaven far surpasses any amount of earthly gold and silver. The rewards are great, the crowns supreme, the wisdom we gain are priceless.
The reason God chooses turtles on posts and transforms them into His willing vessels is because through our weaknesses, He is strong. Using someone that is not prepared for a particular work showcases God’s handiwork in a way that glorifies Him. What an awesome lesson to other Christians and to the world!
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She is the author of several books including: When Christians Hurt Christians, The Crowns of the Believers and others available in online bookstores. She authors several columns, using her God-given talent to shine a light in a dark world. You can browse her blog at Refreshment In Refuge.
If you'd like to take a look at some Christian fiction and Christian non-fiction book reviews before the books hit the book store shelves, check out Gina's book reviews at Upon Reflection
Gina is a partner and COO of Common Sense Marketing Strategies, LLC that owns Authors Community and eBookChristian.com
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