Maayanah Shel Torah (by R’ Alexander Zusia Friedman, Poland 1937) relates the story of 2 brothers who were disciples of the Rebbe of Lublin. Both brothers served as Chassidic Rebbeim themselves, yet one brother had a large following and the other only had a small group of Chassidim. The brother with a few followers once asked the second brother, why is it that despite being of equally piety and disciples from the same Rebbe, he has less followers then his brother. The second responded that he too asks the question why he has more followers then his brother. The brother continued and said that in both cases the question is also the answer.

The Avnei Azel states that humility was the reason itself why Moses was chosen to lead the Nation out of Egypt.

The Gemara in Sota 12a relates that after Pharaoh decreed that every male child be slaughtered Amram, divorced his wife, to escape the pain of losing a child. He was soon followed by all the Israelites. The Gemama relates that Amram then sought the counsel of his daughter who rebuked him saying that whilst Pharaoh’s decree is against males, yours is against both male and females, whilst Pharaoh’s decree concerns this world, yours concerns the world to come and whilst his decree remains doubtful yours is a certainty. On hearing this Amram remarried his wife and all of the Israelites followed suit.

Amram and Jocheved’s actions following their rebuke laid the foundation in the quality of true humility necessary for leadership. They realised that as leaders of a generation, who people look up too, their actions would be emulated by others. Despite the personal danger of having children not having them would have lead to the end of all Israelite births. It was the result of listening to the rebuke of a young daughter, someone ‘beneath their status in society’ and their self sacrifice for the sake of the Israelites that resulted in the birth of Moshe.

From the moment of birth Moses displayed acts of humility building up to the point when he was ready to lead the Nation, for these character traits to materialise fully Moses needed to flee Egypt settling into the humble job of a Sheppard leading his flock.

The Midrash tells of a day when one of the flock ran away from Moses. After chasing after it he sees that the kid was drinking from a spring. The Midrash says that Moses cried out ‘I didn’t know that you were firstly’ he then picked up the kid and carried it back to the flock. It was at this point that HaShem said ‘you are merciful in tending sheep you will tend to My flock’.

HaShem then appeared to Moses from within the thorn bush, thus to say I am with my people, I understand their pain. True leadership comes from leading within not from above looking down and thus the stage was set for the final test. HaShem asked Moses to lead to people out of Egypt. His response, “...who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh...” (Shemos 3:11).

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