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Thursday
Jun192008

influential?

A couple of weeks ago, I had one of those Sundays where I really didn't feel like going to church. If it wasn't for my good friend Renee, I probably wouldn't have...but because I have a hard time saying no to anything, I went with her. The weekend's sermon was on parenting young children, and since I have no children, I assumed that it wouldn't apply to me. Usually, I'm the one who tries to convince people that everything can be applicable, but even I couldn't convince myself that listening to this sermon would be more beneficial than a few extra hours of sleep.


We've all been there...and we've all been proven wrong when we walk away from the very thing we didn't want to do with a new perspective on what it means to be a follower of Christ. This was no exception. I walked away after listening to a message on raising Godly kids with so many questions:
--How do I attempt to influence people?
--Does my influence bring fame to Christ?
--Am I motivated to be an influential leader because of the glory God receives?
--How do I measure my success as an influential leader?
As I started to evaluate my honest answers to these questions, I realized that many of them were rooted in pride.

There were 2 lies that I could immediately identify that I had bought into. First was the lie that doing all of the right actions would make people look up to me. Maybe you're like me...you realize this isn't the truth, but for some reason, you keep attempting to make it work by getting involved in all the "right" things, mostly because of obligation. The problem with this approach is that it isn't focused on transformation...it's just an attempt to get as many people to live their life the way you live yours because you have things, for the most part, together.

The second lie is closely tied with something I love, and that is language. Perfectly crafted sentences are beautiful to me. But sometimes, this strength of mine can become a stumbling block. It's like trying to discover which key on the ring will unlock the door you are standing in front of. If I explain myself perfectly, and it doesn't automatically result in the response I had hoped for, I will try again...and again...and again. And the problem with this is that I give MY words too much power and focus very little on letting the Spirit speak through me.

Both of these lies are rooted in pride; in the fact that at the end of the day, I evaluate my success as a leader on whether a person did what I wanted them to or not. But the work of advancing the Kingdom is about denying yourself. It's about being humble and not demanding attention or praise, but pointing all things back to the Creator. To be influential, as a Christian, is to walk closely with God. It's to boldly speak of what He has done, and what He continues to do in your life. It's to study His Word and let His wisdom flow from your lips. It's living with joy in all circumstances and speaking the truth in love and reconciling relationships and following through with commitments.

At the end of the day, these things are far simpler than trying to manipulate an image of yourself that has the appearance of perfection. Humility is far more attractive to those God has given you the honor of leading.

 

Reader Comments (1)

Amy, you are so brave to admit these things. It helps me to remember that I am not the only one who falters at times. Thanks for your inspiring words :-)

Jun 21, 2008 at 9:34 AM | Unregistered CommenterAmberly

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