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Sermon Notes

Introduction to Better: You know the saying- “If you keep doing what you’ve been doing, you will keep getting what you’ve been getting.” We know this is true, and yet we still fall into the same routines. Routines of being overworked, insecure, foolish, and worried. But, what if there were a better way? What if we could align our lives to some ancient insight about how to live and grow? In this series we are going to examine common traps that we all fall in, and then we dive into how the Scriptures addresses these real concerns with answers.

Today we will examine the epidemic of busyness and stress. As we do this we will also look for helpful clues In the life of Moses. Here, we will see an event take place that actually becomes more than just good advice. But, this conversation becomes a turning point for Moses and the entire nation he led.

Today we will look briefly at a key figure in the Old Testament. 

This person:

  • Was highly educated and cultured
  • Had a diversity of experience
  • Led an organization the size of Fortune 500 Company
  • Went toe to toe with the most powerful leader on the planet

And Yet he, Moses, struggled with…

  • Stress
  • Anger
  • Doubt
  • Failure
  • Missed opportunities

Can you relate? You may have many strengths, experiences and abilities, but sometimes your faults seem to out shine your strengths. At a key moment in Moses’ life, he received some advice that could be just as critical for you as it was for him. What we learn is that even though God can do miracles in our life, nothing can replace good wisdom at the right moment.

1. Moses was overloaded – Exodus 18:12-16

  • Moses has a job
  • Feels isolated
  • Works all day
  • BUT- the work never ends

2. Moses receives Jethro’s observation – Exodus 18:14-18

  • Its not good for you and your people
  • This is too much
  • You cannot handle this alone

Say this out loud:
“I cannot handle it alone”

Key Question:
Are you willing to listen and seek help?

3. Here’s the advice – Exodus 18:19-23

  • Don’t’ abdicate your main role
  • Get help from capable people

When you do you main thing, we all better maintain things.
What are the main things that you must get done?

Ask these three questions:

  • Does this need to be done?
  • Does this need to be done right now?
  • Does this need to be done by me?

Key Insight:
This critical help for Moses came not in the form of miracles but from meaningful relationships.


  • Some of you need to be the Jethro
  • Some of you need to be the capable people who help
  • Some of you need to listen

Discussion Questions:


  1. We’ve all heard the old saying, “If you keep doing what you’ve been doing, you will keep getting what you’ve been getting.” What specific areas in your life do youneed to change if your future is going to be better than your past?
  2. Moses was highly educated and had a great deal of experience, however, Pastor Rusty reminds us that he still struggled with: stress, anger, doubt, failure and missed opportunities. Which of these struggles is the biggest challenge for you?
  3. According to Exodus 18:12-16, Moses job was too much for him, he regularly felt overwhelmed because his work tended to isolated him from the people and it never felt like it was completely finished. How do you think God wants you to respond when you find yourself isolated and overwhelmed by your responsibilities?
  4. Moses father-in-law Jethro saw his son-in-law’s stress and recognized that he was unable to keep up with all the demands that had been placed on him. What area or areas of your life can you not handle alone at the present? Based upon what you’re learning in this study of Exodus 18, what do you think you need to start doing or stop doing right now?
  5. Jethro also suggested in Exodus 18:18 that Moses find capable godly co-workers who could assist him with the work God had entrusted to him. Who has God used in the past to encourage you during a trying time?
  6. Here are three questions Pastor Rusty suggested we all need to immediately ask ourselves:
    1. Does this need to be done?
    2. Does this need to be done right now?
    3. Does this need to be done by me? How can asking yourself these three questions help you determine your priorities?


  • Who do you need to be willing to listen to at this point?
  • Whose support and encouragement do you need to be willing to accept?
  • What important area of your life are you not sure how to handle right now?
  • Who might God want you to ask for help?
  • Who might be well served by your past experience?List two or three people for whom you could serve as a “Jethro.”
  • Stop to pray right now that God will open your eyes to both those who need your help and those to whom you can become a Jethro?