Good camping to everyone at the World Scout Jamboree at the Bechtel Summit Reserve!
In Parasha Pinchas this week, we have an interesting discussion of leadership. God reminds Moses that he will not enter Israel, as punishment for having struck the rock for water in the Wilderness of Zin instead of asking it for water as God had commanded.
Always thinking of the Children of Israel before himself, Moses then says to God, “May the Lord, God of the spirits of all flesh, appoint a man over the assembly who shall go out before them and come in before them, who shall take them out and bring them in; and let the assembly of the Lord not be like sheep that have no shepherd.”
God said to Moses, “Take to yourself Joshua son of Nun, a man in whom there is spirit, and lean your hand upon him. You shall stand him before Elazar the Kohen and before the entire assembly, and command him before their eyes. You shall place some of your majesty upon him, so that the entire assembly of Israel will pay heed.”
Here, God teaches us a leader must have strong character or, as it is called here, “spirit”. The Hebrew word used is ruach, which also means “wind”. The spirit of the leader must be such that, like the wind, it can move others in the direction the leader thinks the group should go.
There are many kinds of spirit. In some, it is enthusiasm, like the Scout who leads campfire songs. In others, it is a quiet determination to bring out the best in others, like the wise Senior Patrol Leader who finds special talents in the troop’s Scouts and recruits them to be the troop historian, musician, or a den chief.
Each of us has special qualities that make us unique and, when strengthened and developed, help make up our spirit. What talents and traits make up your spirit? How can you use them to “help other people at all times”? When you do this, you are a leader.