Yesterday I was sitting in a leadership meeting yesterday and Pastor Greg said something that I’ve heard before but somehow this time it hit me. He said, “Even if you’re the most introverted person it’s said that in your life time you’ll influence at least 10,000 people.” That’s a lot of people! That’s just if you’re the most introverted. Think about the amount of people that ones like Billy Graham has been used to influence in his lifetime. The 10,000 people seems minor compared to the amount I’m sure he has influenced.
You are not merely in peoples life just for the sake of being in their life. I believe that God has a reason and a purpose for each life you contact. Will you influence them for the good, or for the not so good?
1 Corinthians 15:33 (NIV)
Do not be misled: "Bad company corrupts good character."
I began to think about this statistic. What kind of influence am I leaving with people? What kind of influence are you leaving with people? Most of us have probably heard the phrase that you may be the only Bible a person ever reads, and, “Go out into the world and preach the gospel and if you must use words.” We are to be the living Bibles out in the world.
Some of you may or may not know that I just finished writing my 11th book, and it was my 2nd full length Bible teaching book. I’m really excited about this one, and I’ll share more about it as I get it published which I believe it’ll be soon. However for the book I found some scary statistics that goes on in the body of Christ.
According to the book UnChristian by Kinnaman and Lyons there was a very interesting study done by the Barna group. The statistics will floor you. 87% of outsiders think that Christians are judgmental, 52% of churchgoers feel the same way. 85% of outsiders think that Christians are hypocritical, and 47% of the church feels the same way. (http://www.urbanchristiannews.com/ucn/2010/05/how-to-get-past-your-church-wounds.html)
That folks is an epidemic in the church today!
[ The Royal Rule of Love ] My dear friends, don't let public opinion influence how you live out our glorious, Christ-originated faith. If a man enters your church wearing an expensive suit, and a street person wearing rags comes in right after him, and you say to the man in the suit, "Sit here, sir; this is the best seat in the house!" and either ignore the street person or say, "Better sit here in the back row," haven't you segregated God's children and proved that you are judges who can't be trusted?
We have to wake up and realize that we have a large sphere of influence whether we realize it or not. We have to realize that we have a choice as to how we influence them? We have to stop thinking that this journey is all about us and our own walk of salvation. This journey is about God, and allow His kingdom to come forth on the earth. His heart is that you would wake up today and realize it’s not all about you. It about Him. Choose to be an influencer for the good! Choose to live your live in such a way people look at you and want what you have.
I’ll close this blog with the lyrics of a song I’ve always loved. It’s “If we are the body” by Casting Crowns. Think about what it says and how you can use it in your life. Hope that gives you something to think about. Remember you are an influencer!
"If We Are The Body" by Casting Crowns
It's crowded in worship today
As she slips in trying to fade into the faces
The girl's teasing laughter is carrying farther than they know
Farther than they know
But if we are the body
Why aren't His arms reaching?
Why aren't His hands healing?
Why aren't His words teaching?
And if we are the body
Why aren't His feet going?
Why is His love not showing them there is a way?
There is a way
A traveler is far away from home
He sheds his coat and quietly sinks into the back row
The weight of their judgemental glances
Tells him that his chances are better out on the road
Jesus payed much too high a price
For us to pick and choose who should come
And we are the body of Christ
Jesus is the way