On Chol Hamo’ed Pesach, as well as Succot, we read the Torah portion which deals with a discussion between Moshe and Hashem following the episode of the Golden Calf. Moshe asks that he be shown the glory of Hashem so that he will understand the workings of Hashem.
The response he got was that no man can understand the workings of Hashem. Hashem did, however, intend to give him some understanding. He tells him: VENITZAVTA AL HATZUR, “…you will stand on the rock”, and He adds that when His glory shall pass over him, VESAMTICHA BENIKRAT HATZUR, “…I shall place you in the cleft of the rock…”. (Ex. 33,21-22)
This is a very difficult passage to understand. What is implied by standing on the rock or in the rock? In a homiletic sense, though, one can read a strong message into this. There are times when a leader must stand firmly as if they were on the top of a rock and not succumb to pressures from within or from without. In other times they should be prepared to step aside and place themselves in a less formidable position, that is, to stand in the rock and not defiantly on top.
The sign of a good leader is one who knows which of these positions they should take. Not every leader is capable of making this distinction.