Updated: Jan 18, 2022
As we look at the OBI goals, projects, and chaplain trainings this year, we are reminded how important strong, wise, godly decision making is to our organization. In addition, we are focusing on continuing to build a strong OBI team for the future. Who travels together on these critical projects, makes a difference to the success of each outcome! As we focus on team development, we recalled the story of Deborah and Barak in Judges 4.
“Now Deborah, a prophet, the wife of Lapidoth, was leading Israel at that time.” Judges 4:4
“She held court under the Palm of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in the hill country of Ephraim, and the Israelites went up to her to have their disputes decided.” Judges 4:5
Deborah has much to teach us as leaders today. We can learn from her military leadership, strength, wisdom, courage, and decision-making skills. Understanding her story and role in biblical and military history gives us a context as to why we can learn from her leadership skills.
Deborah was a prophet, a leader who listened to God and followed God’s instructions to a mighty victory over the Canaanites. She was a part of the 3rd generation in the “Promised Land”. Historical evidence records that Deborah was blessed for her obedience to God. She had a reputation of being someone who was instructed in divine knowledge by the inspiration of the Spirit of God. This is quite impressive! As a prophet Deborah’s role was to hear from God, follow God, reveal the nature of God to the people, lead the people in ways pleasing to God, as well as to call people to be obedient. She was respected as a public expounder and speaker who delivered the message of God to the people of Israel.
Deborah made wise and godly decisions as she was known to be a wise judge who followed God. In other words, Deborah judged Israel as God’s mouth to them. She was known for making good decisions, bringing order, and setting up a process for handling a demanding workload. Her influence brought historical recognition both in religious matters, governing and military matters. Her obedience in conquering Canaan was important to God as she needed to deal with conflict, mediate disagreements and make hard decisions. Is there a hard but important decision you need to act on?
Barak as the General of the Army had asked Deborah to go with him to a confrontation with Israel’s enemies at the Kishon River. It was very common to bring something important, even sacred with you to battle and often that was a person.
Barak and Deborah's ability to be a strong team was instrumental in their successful outcome. We too understand the importance of this team development, in the success of project outcomes.
Please pray for Bruce Kittleson and the team as they travel to Ukraine in February and March for KTS Chaplains training and meetings. In addition, the OBI team continues to solidify teams and future projects in Croatia, Bulgaria, and Eastern Europe.
Nancy Jernigan, PhD
Board Member, Finance Director