Throw a pebble into the lake, and a wave is formed; and another and another; and as they increase, the circle widens, until it reaches the very shore.
So it is too with our influence.
Beyond our knowledge or control, our influence is as far- reaching as eternity.
It is either a blessing or a curse to those in our lives. For, we are all surrounded by an atmosphere of our own,–an atmosphere, that may be, charged with the lifegiving power of faith, courage, and hope, and sweet with the fragrance of love or heavy and chill with the gloom of discontent and selfishness, or poisonous with the deadly taint of cherished sin.
By this atmosphere surrounding us, every person with whom we come into contact is consciously or unconsciously affected.
So what can we say of our influence?
Is it enhancing our inner circles?
Is it reforming or preserving power in the world?
Is it counterworking the destroying, corrupting influence of evil?
Is it reflecting the Spirit of Jesus to those in need?
Ellen G. White says, “Every act of our lives affects others for good or evil. Our influence is tending upward or downward; it is felt, acted upon, and to a greater or less degree reproduced by others. If by our example we aid others in the development of good principles, we give them power to do good. In their turn they exert the same beneficial influence upon others, and thus hundreds and thousands are affected by our unconscious influence. If we by acts strengthen or force into activity the evil powers possessed by those around us, we share their sin, and will have to render an account for the good we might have done them and did not do, because we made not God our strength, our guide, our counselor.”
If for some reason you still believe that your influence is insignificant and your obedience to God goes unnoticed, consider our first Shero of the week – Belshazzar’s grandmother.
Belshazzar, king of Babylon and son of Nebuchadnezzar, was in the midst of a raucous party in Babylon, surrounded by a thousand of his lords, his wives and his concubines. In the mist of the party, Belshazzar saw a hand that began to write on the wall with long and elegant strokes. With his knees knocking and his face growing pale and terrified, Belshazzar was unable to understand the mysterious writing.
It was his grandmother who then instructed him to call on Daniel, the faithful Jewish visionary who had guided her husband, King Nebuchadnezzar, through many trials, including hallucinations, dreams and insanity.
Daniel, now an old man, was found, and read the message on the wall.
Belshazzar had forgotten Daniel but because of Daniel’s great influence, the grandmother of the king, remembered him a time of need. And because of her great influence, Daniel was called to the king.
Belshazzar’s grandmother remembered that Daniel had given the king, her husband, a sense of order and God’s presence through his difficult trials back in the day. She had seen Daniel and his friends walk through flames and not be burned; she had seen hungry lions lay down before him when he was thrown to them for food. She knew he was a holy man, one of God’s people.
When everyone in the kingdom had forgotten the influence of Daniel, one woman remembered him and His God.
When everyone was carried away by the terror of the evening, one woman, sober and quietly, used her influence for good.
I am comforted that God always registers the silent good work I am doing. Even though it may not be advertised or broadcasted.
I am also glad that in the right moments, He brings wise counsel to my mind to share with those in need.
No act that we commit is without notice or influence.
And if for some reason you believe that you are too young, too inexperienced to influence an older peer; or too poor, too ordinary to influence someone who is wealthier than you are; or you are too shy, or too uncultured to be used by God, consider the story of Naaman and the servant girl, our second Shero of the week.
Naaman, was a high-ranking military commander, yet it was his servant who led him to be cured of leprosy.
The young servant girl urged Naaman to follow the prophet’s Elisha’s orders to bathe in the Jordan River and because of her influence, Naaman obeyed the prophet and was restored to health.
Ellen G. White says, “Every person is exerting an influence upon the lives of others. We must either be as a light to brighten and cheer their path, or as a desolating tempest to destroy. We are either leading our associates upward to happiness and immortal life, or downward to sorrow and eternal ruin.”
God doesn’t need us to have a high ranking status, qualifications or years of experience to exert a powerful influence on His behalf to others.
He just needs your heart as He needs mine.
(C) 2017, Dentrecia Blanchette