No gift should be received with greater sobriety than influence!
I am doing a Beth Moore study on James and today's lesson was on teachers and the responsibility they bear. As someone in ministry, the truth quoted above rests about my shoulders as both a comforting reminder and a heavy yoke depending on the day! To be an influencer is exciting and scary...inspiring and challenging. To know that one small action can cause a ripple effect is humbling.
There are so many great quotes in this lesson that as a teacher and a pastor's wife challenge and encourage me!
"Let's quite trying to take people's pulse to see how much they love us...If you can get people pleased, you cannot keep them pleased. Bind your wrist to the One who isn't fickle."
This made me want to shout, "YES!" It's so true! As soon as we are focused on making one person or group of people happy, someone else is getting mad and leaving. We do what we do for an audience of One and there is great responsibility in that!
Galations 1:10 ~ "Do you think I speak this strongly in order to manipulate crowds? Or curry favour with God? Or get popular applause? If my goal was popularity, I wouldn't bother being Christ's slave."
I knew quite a few years before I married Tim that I was called to full-time ministry. That fact has brought me great comfort over the last 22 years of marriage/ministry that we have been engaged in. I cannot imagine how much more difficult the road may have been if I felt I was just along for the ride, so to speak, and not actively engaged in what God has called us both to do.
Still yet, the fact that what I do and say has incredible influence over others drives me to my knees and makes me ever so dependent on the Holy Spirit's direction. There are days that I feel so very overwhelmed by the responsibility because I truly love those we have been called to minister to on a daily basis. I know that my life and how I live it is either pointing people TO Jesus or AWAY from Him. My influence, especially over those in my own home, is that powerful...and that scares me!!
Lord, I cannot do what I've been called to do without You! I am in desperate need of Your wisdom and Your guidance. It seems that we are in a season of separating light and darkness...sheep and goats...true followers and those who are just falling in line behind the masses. May my life be an example of someone who is choosing to walk in the light, drawing a line in the sand without compromise and leading others forward in spirit and in truth!! Please help me remain ever sober about the realm of influence I possess and never treat lightly what that means in the lives of others!!