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RESOLVED TO WORK AT SHARING THE LOAD

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Minister and manage your time well.

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Exodus 18:1–27 NASB95
Now Jethro, the priest of Midian, Moses’ father-in-law, heard of all that God had done for Moses and for Israel His people, how the Lord had brought Israel out of Egypt. Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, took Moses’ wife Zipporah, after he had sent her away, and her two sons, of whom one was named Gershom, for Moses said, “I have been a sojourner in a foreign land.” The other was named Eliezer, for he said, “The God of my father was my help, and delivered me from the sword of Pharaoh.” Then Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, came with his sons and his wife to Moses in the wilderness where he was camped, at the mount of God. He sent word to Moses, “I, your father-in-law Jethro, am coming to you with your wife and her two sons with her.” Then Moses went out to meet his father-in-law, and he bowed down and kissed him; and they asked each other of their welfare and went into the tent. Moses told his father-in-law all that the Lord had done to Pharaoh and to the Egyptians for Israel’s sake, all the hardship that had befallen them on the journey, and how the Lord had delivered them. Jethro rejoiced over all the goodness which the Lord had done to Israel, in delivering them from the hand of the Egyptians. So Jethro said, “Blessed be the Lord who delivered you from the hand of the Egyptians and from the hand of Pharaoh, and who delivered the people from under the hand of the Egyptians. “Now I know that the Lord is greater than all the gods; indeed, it was proven when they dealt proudly against the people.” Then Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, took a burnt offering and sacrifices for God, and Aaron came with all the elders of Israel to eat a meal with Moses’ father-in-law before God. It came about the next day that Moses sat to judge the people, and the people stood about Moses from the morning until the evening. Now when Moses’ father-in-law saw all that he was doing for the people, he said, “What is this thing that you are doing for the people? Why do you alone sit as judge and all the people stand about you from morning until evening?” Moses said to his father-in-law, “Because the people come to me to inquire of God. “When they have a dispute, it comes to me, and I judge between a man and his neighbor and make known the statutes of God and His laws.” Moses’ father-in-law said to him, “The thing that you are doing is not good. “You will surely wear out, both yourself and these people who are with you, for the task is too heavy for you; you cannot do it alone. “Now listen to me: I will give you counsel, and God be with you. You be the people’s representative before God, and you bring the disputes to God, then teach them the statutes and the laws, and make known to them the way in which they are to walk and the work they are to do. “Furthermore, you shall select out of all the people able men who fear God, men of truth, those who hate dishonest gain; and you shall place these over them as leaders of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties and of tens. “Let them judge the people at all times; and let it be that every major dispute they will bring to you, but every minor dispute they themselves will judge. So it will be easier for you, and they will bear the burden with you. “If you do this thing and God so commands you, then you will be able to endure, and all these people also will go to their place in peace.” So Moses listened to his father-in-law and did all that he had said. Moses chose able men out of all Israel and made them heads over the people, leaders of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties and of tens. They judged the people at all times; the difficult dispute they would bring to Moses, but every minor dispute they themselves would judge. Then Moses bade his father-in-law farewell, and he went his way into his own land.
Exodus 18:13–23 NASB95
13 It came about the next day that Moses sat to judge the people, and the people stood about Moses from the morning until the evening. 14 Now when Moses’ father-in-law saw all that he was doing for the people, he said, “What is this thing that you are doing for the people? Why do you alone sit as judge and all the people stand about you from morning until evening?” 15 Moses said to his father-in-law, “Because the people come to me to inquire of God. 16 “When they have a dispute, it comes to me, and I judge between a man and his neighbor and make known the statutes of God and His laws.” 17 Moses’ father-in-law said to him, “The thing that you are doing is not good. 18 “You will surely wear out, both yourself and these people who are with you, for the task is too heavy for you; you cannot do it alone. 19 “Now listen to me: I will give you counsel, and God be with you. You be the people’s representative before God, and you bring the disputes to God, 20 then teach them the statutes and the laws, and make known to them the way in which they are to walk and the work they are to do. 21 “Furthermore, you shall select out of all the people able men who fear God, men of truth, those who hate dishonest gain; and you shall place these over them as leaders of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties and of tens. 22 “Let them judge the people at all times; and let it be that every major dispute they will bring to you, but every minor dispute they themselves will judge. So it will be easier for you, and they will bear the burden with you. 23 “If you do this thing and God so commands you, then you will be able to endure, and all these people also will go to their place in peace.”
exodus 18
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OVERCOMING WHEN OVERWHELMED

Too much to do, too little time to do it; too many people making demands upon your time, all with conflicting agendas.
Sound familiar?
Twenty years or so ago, at the dawn of the electronic age, people were prophesying that less paper and more technology would free us to work less and pay more attention to the most important things in our lives. Unfortunately, those predictions seem to have been dead wrong. We may not be getting paid for working more hours than we were twenty years ago, but given smartphones, email and colleagues in a variety of time zones, many of us seem to be spending a lot more time in work-related activities than ever before.
People in leadership and management positions seem to be particularly squeezed. Especially since the recession, spans of control have broadened, and at the same time, managers are expected to accomplish more with fewer resources. One of the CEOs I coach, newly promoted to her position, has been feeling enormously overwhelmed and has been wondering how she can possibly do everything she’s supposed to do and still have some kind of a personal life.  Here are some approaches that have helped her and others to turn down the dial on "overwhelm":
1. BE OPEN TO ADVICE. (V. 17)
A. REALIZE THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN IMPORTANT AND URGENT (V. 22)
One of the tips for managing your time is to find the right system to actually do it. The quadrant time-management system is probably the most effective. It splits your activities into four quadrants based on urgency and importance. Things are either urgent or important, both, or neither. Neither (quadrant 4) are the activities that you want to stay away from, but it's the not-urgent-but-important quadrant (2) that you want to focus on. The big blocks. Why? So that when the URGENT and IMPORTANT pop up and these things do so, you want to be able to fit them in and not have the urgent and important take over.
B. GET SUPPORT AND TRUST COMPETENT PEOPLE
Don’t simply vent. Find people who have a talent or niche ability that can take on a ministry or solve a problem. Don’t let your perfectionism get in the way. Yes, you have your way to get things done, but can you be humble enough to trust competent people to figure out their own path?
.  Often when we're feeling under the gun, we vent to friends, family, and even colleagues; complaining and - dare I say - whining about our difficulties. In small doses, this can be a welcome relief. However, a steady diet of complaining can make you feel even worse - like a helpless, angry victim.  Instead, ask those folks to help you figure out how to reduce your overwhelm: get their support to think through how to do the five things above, and ask them for any insights or advice they have about what's worked for them.  Involving others in resolving your overload will ultimately be more satisfying for both of you - and far more useful.
1. EMPLOY YOURSELF WHERE GIFTED
2. MULTIPLY MINISTRY AND LIFE BY SHARING THE LOAD.
MULTIPLY MINISTRY AND LIFE BY SHARING THE LOAD.
Only do what only you can do. I encourage leaders to make this their personal mantra.  Most leaders of my acquaintance spend way too much time doing things that other people can and should be doing.  Sometimes it’s because they like doing it; a particular task can feel comfortable or fun, and so they don’t want to let it go - but it should now be someone else’s job.  Or perhaps they don’t trust others to do it in the way they do it, or as well - but if they keep doing it themselves, it will create a bottleneck.  Sometimes it’s simply a habit - and yet now somebody else is ready, willing and able to do it.  All of these kinds of tasks should be handed off, and doing so will reduce your load. Try this. For the next few days, before you do anything, ask yourself: Am I the only person who can do this?  Should I be the only person who can do this? If the answer to either question is no, don’t do it...and if the first answer is yes but the second answer is no - hire or train someone to do that task, and then delegate it to them.
Don’t simply vent. Find people who have a talent or niche ability that can take on a ministry or solve a problem. Don’t let your perfectionism get in the way. Yes, you have your way to get things done, but can you be humble enough to trust competent people to figure out their own path?
.  Often when we're feeling under the gun, we vent to friends, family, and even colleagues; complaining and - dare I say - whining about our difficulties. In small doses, this can be a welcome relief. However, a steady diet of complaining can make you feel even worse - like a helpless, angry victim.  Instead, ask those folks to help you figure out how to reduce your overwhelm: get their support to think through how to do the five things above, and ask them for any insights or advice they have about what's worked for them.  Involving others in resolving your overload will ultimately be more satisfying for both of you - and far more useful.
  make sure that  everyone in a meeting knows “TTOG” – topic, time, owner, goal.  That is, What are we talking about? How long are we going to spend on it? Who’s responsible for it? (that is, who’s ‘on point’ for moving it forward), and – this one’s important – Why are we discussing it?  If you make a habit of clarifying these things (or asking others to clarify it for meetings they own)  everyone’s time will be much better spent.
STEP BACK AND RE-EVALUATE. The same study I referenced earlier shows that execs spend even more time – 20 hours a week, on average – in “miscellaneous” activities.  And that executives thought they spent their time differently than their actual time use as recorded by their assistants.  I suspect that a good deal of leaders’ time every day gets sucked up into self-generated tasks and conversations that are simply not productive.  Now, don’t get me wrong.  I know that taking a rejuvenation break, or having a lighthearted, fun conversation with a colleague, or getting outside for a few minutes can all be worthwhile, even necessary. Just choose wisely, grasshopper: make sure that when you are engaged in ‘miscellaneous’  activities, they actually support your mental, physical and emotional health, vs. being a mindless zone-out.

2. SIMPLE STEPS T0 TACKLE.

2. SIMPLE STEPS FOR STARTING.
 Too often, we do things - both professionally and personally - because we just assume "we have to" or "we've always done that."  Really?  Think about the things you do regularly that feel like a waste of time.  It may be that they yield so little value for you and others, given the time spent, that you should just stop doing them altogether. Ask yourself:  Does this really need to get done? What would happen if I didn't do it? One person I coach asked himself these two questions, and he immediately 1) stopped balancing his checkbook, 2) stopped writing a detailed monthly report mandated by his former boss (it was pretty easy to convince his current boss that  it was unnecessary), and 3) stopped going to two weekly meetings (instead he got a quick download from employees of his who also attended).
A. DON’T FINISH THE DAY WITHOUT STARTING THE NEXT DAY.
LOOK AHEAD.
PLAN FOR SUCCESS.
B. LEARN TO SAY NO.
Say no.  Learning how to say no - diplomatically and graciously, but still no - can be a life-saver. Many of the people I coach and work with who are the most overwhelmed simply don't know how or aren't willing to set reasonable boundaries for themselves, and so end up committing to much more than they can reasonably accomplish.  Whenever someone makes a request of you, before you say yes, think about whether or not you can actually deliver on the commitment you'd be making, without crowding out other commitments or leaving yourself burning the midnight oil.  If a 'yes' would put you over the line, let the requester know and respectfully decline. And even if the requester is your boss or your client, you can still say a version of no: just frame it as "that would be difficult, given my current priorities; let's find another way to get this done."
In order to say yes to that which matters you must say no to the urgent and time sappers.
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